DCAFProject › Ukraine: Improve the criminal justice sector response to DV and VAW

Ukraine: Improve the criminal justice sector response to DV and VAW

Ukraine has committed to ratifying the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence (Istanbul Convention) in 2016. DCAF and its local partner, the NGO La Strada-Ukraine, have capitalized on this context by initiating a two-phase project paving the way for the implementation of the Convention within the criminal justice sector.

The first phase of the project, started in March 2016, is a gap analysis assessing the readiness of the criminal justice sector to operationalize the obligations associated with the Convention. This includes identifying the institutional and practice-based barriers that impede efforts to prevent DV/VAW, protect victims and prosecute perpetrators.

The comprehensive assessment report published at the end of the first phase will be used as a baseline to develop the intervention phase of the project. This second phase is expected to start in late 2016 or early 2017 depending on when project funding is secured, and will focus on building institutional and individual capacities to address DV/VAW within the criminal justice sector.

The objectives of the project include the following:

  • reduce/eliminate gender-based stereotypes that interfere with practitioners’ willingness and ability to provide victims of VAW and DV access to protection and justice;
  • develop a critical mass  of “gender equality champions” who will promote improved practices in the response to  DV  and VAW through education/training, awareness raising and advocacy efforts; 
  • improve the capacity of practitioners to respond to cases of DV and VAW using internationally established best practices; and
  • increase coordination between criminal justice system institutions and actors to better prevent and combat DV and VAW.