Trainings: Towards an Efficient Judicial Protection against Discrimination of Marginalized Groups in BiH

1Heinrich Böll Stiftung, Office in BiH, and Sarajevo Open Centre, with the support of Centre for Judicial and Prosecutorial Training of RS (CEST RS), in the period from May 18 to May 19, 2015 in Istočno Sarajevo, have organized a training for 14 judges and prosecutors. Also, in the period from May 20 to May 21 2015, with the support of Centre for Judicial and Prosecutorial Training of FBiH (CEST FBiH) in Sarajevo, a training for 28 judges and prosecutors on the same topic: Anti-discrimination Law, combating discrimination of minority groups, the experience of BiH and experiences from the region, was organized.

The aim of the training was to exchange the knowledge, experience, and practice with representatives of judicial institutions in BiH in order to facilitate classification and adequate recognition of such cases, but also to have more efficient implementation of the BiH Law on Prohibition of Discrimination.

During the training, a combined social and political studies approach to the problem of discrimination was used, as well as examples from legal theory and practice. During this interactive training, judges and prosecutors had the opportunity to listen, discuss and gain new knowledge on topics related to combating discrimination of minority groups in BiH. Slobodanka Dekić, M.A. in Human Rights and Coordinator of the Equality for all: Coalition of Civil Society in the Fight against Discrimination, introduced judges and prosecutors tothe ways prejudices may affect the professional life of civil servants.

In the part of the training that dealt with the system of legal protection against discrimination in the legal system of BiH, judges and prosecutors had an opportunity to listen and discuss the functioning of the system of legal protection, the distinction between collective and individual discrimination, and what are the steps in proving discrimination. The lecturer was Nedim Ademović from Sarajevo, a lawyer and a professor of constitutional law at the Law Faculty in Zenica. Participants of the training also discussed discrimination and social relations, indirect discrimination and combating discrimination, and this session was facilitated by Srđan Dvornik, M.A. in Political science and a sociologist from Zagreb.

Mladen Antonijević, M.A. in International Law and Human Rights from Belgrade, discussed the general anti-discrimination norms, mechanisms and standards for the protection of the rights of sexual minorities, and the abolition of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity with the judges and prosecutors.

Although BiH has a satisfactory legal framework for protection against discrimination, due to its inadequate implementation an increasing number of cases of discrimination is registered in practice. Therefore, it is necessary to work on additional training for representatives of judiciary in BiH, in order to provide adequate prosecution and suppression of discrimination.