(Geneva, October 05, 2018) – Defence for Children International (DCI), in co-operation with the World Organisation against Torture (OMCT), was proud to organize the second edition of the Justice for Children Award ceremony followed by a discussion panel on violence against girls in the justice system which took place on October 2nd, 2018 at the European Union Delegation to the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland.
It was the occasion to reward Mr. Filip Waszczuk, winner of the competition and student in Anthropology and Human Rights at Sciences Po Paris, as well as to have a high-level discussion with renowned Human Rights experts on Justice for Children.
H.E. Walter Stevens, Head of the European Union (EU) Delegation to the United Nations in Geneva, opened the ceremony highlighting the commitment of the EU to ending all violence against children and its implication in various projects, resolutions and researches such as the “United Nations Global Study on Children Deprived of Liberty”.
While receiving the award and presenting his paper, Mr. Waszczuk highlighted the issue of violence against girls with disabilities in the justice system in Uganda, in a structured, passionate and engaged tone. This led to a fervent discussion moderated by Mr. Alex Kamarotos, Executive Director of DCI, on how to work together to ensure girls are protected from violence within the justice systems.
Ms. Renate Winter, Chair of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, set out the four principles of the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child and discussed how the Committee through its State reviews and recommendations is constantly advocating for the rights of girls to be respected, specifically in the context of violence.
Prof. Philippe Jaffé addressed how to bridge the gap between the international standards laws and norms and the day-to-day functioning of the justice system around the world in protecting the rights of the girls when they come into contact with the justice system. Likewise, Mr. Benoît Van Keirsbilck shared a practical example on how non-governmental organisations (NGOs) can work together to ensure protection from violence in places where children are deprived of liberty. He presented a guide developed by DCI-Belgium, a tool to train professionals working in contact with boys and girls deprived of their liberty.
Ms. Meskerem Geset Techane gave an overview of the upcoming report of the UN Working Group on Discrimination against Women and Girls on deprivation of liberty of women and girls to be presented to the UN Human Rights Council in June next year. At the end of the panel, the speakers gave their recommendations on how we can ensure that girls are protected from violence in the justice system.
These Award and panel discussion are a starting point for a reflection on how to strengthen the protection of the girls within the Justice System. To find out more about this award click here.