A successful completion of the Train the Trainer program for police officers of Cantonal MoI’s and the Police Academy representatives of the Federation of BiH

????????????????????????????????????In the period from September to October 2016, Sarajevo Open Centre has organized conducted three two-day trainings of the Train the Trainer program for police officers of Cantonal MoIs and representatives of the FBiH Police on behalf of the Coalition for Combating Hate Speech and Hate Crimes, and in cooperation with the OSCE Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This year, a group of police officers and representatives of FBiH Police Academy has passed the Train the Trainer program, with the objective to enable their holding of permanent trainings of hate crime modules for their colleagues in Cantonal MoIs.

The main objective of the training was to train the participants to transfer their specialist knowledge and skills to other colleagues which includes efficient preparation, implementation and evaluation. Within the Train the Trainer program participants have had the opportunity to acquire the basic knowledge and skills of group facilitation, creation / designing and teaching. One of the goals was also to train police officers to overcome coaching skills. The expected results of this program were for the attendees to gain basic knowledge of different learning styles and key competences for lifelong learning, to be trained for self-coaching skills, motivated for preparation, design and performance classes, but also how to transfer knowledge to various personality types.

The topic of hate crimes was processed in different ways and through different approaches, both through theory and many practical exercises and examples. The training also dealt with understanding of prejudice and stereotypes, understanding the profile of the perpetrators of bias motivated crimes, legal framework and novelties in the criminal-legal protection from hate crimes, police procedures and criminal investigation of crimes committed out of hatred, treatment of victims and witnesses, symbols of hatred and spreading hate through the media.

Also, part of the Train the Trainer programme was the one in which police officers listened about the impact of hate crimes in the community (especially the socially affected groups in Bosnia and Herzegovina, such as: LGBTI persons, Roma, returnee communities, religious communities, as well as religious and sacral property) through the analysis of specific cases. The used learning methods were practical, experiential, interactive and participatory. Additionally, there was a talk about NGOs role in combating hate crimes and how they can help the police in prevention, reporting and investigation of these crimes.

Further, a discussion was held on the model of mediation in the community as a model of preventive action of the police. The purpose was to train police officers for proactive action and the prevention of unwanted and security-threatening situations through conflict mediation in the community, and creating a new quality of relations and communication between police officers and citizens, as well as within the service itself (through the development of social competences).

A highly experienced team of people, with very rich expertise in the field of hate crimes: Dušanka Pribičević-Gelb, a lecturer at the Police Academy in Zagreb, Danijela Petković, chief police adviser of the Croatian Ministry of Internal Affairs, Krešimir Mamić, chief police inspector in Zagreb, and Saša Bojanić, legal adviser at the OSCE Mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina were lecturers of all three two-day trainings.

After completing the programme, working group meetings were held in all cantonal Ministries of Interior so that the knowledge gained through this year’s program can continuously be transmitted through permanent education within Police Institutions, to all police officers in upcoming 2017.

This year’s Train the Trainer program on the topic of “bias motivated crimes” was organized within the project of “Combating Hate Crime in BiH,” funded by the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the OSCE in Vienna.