The Autonomous Women's Centre submitted to the GREVIO Expert Group an alternative report on the implementation of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention of Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence entitled "Improved Legislation, Failed Protection".
The Sixth Independent Report of Autonomous Women’s Center (in further text: AWC) on monitoring implementation of the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence encompasses data review for the three-month period from April to June 2018, and an overview of the main annual findings and conclusions, as June 1, 2018 marks the first year of implementation of the Law. The analysis of the available data and the made recommendations tend to demonstrate whether a comprehensive and appropriate protection of victims of domestic violence has been established, especially of women and children as the most exposed to this type of violence, in line with their rights and needs, as well as with the international standards accepted by the Republic of Serbia.
Women in prostitution are punished over five times more often than men who purchase prostitution services, shows the analysis conducted by the Autonomous Women's Centre (AWC) on all convictions of Misdemeanor Courts in Serbia for the offence of prostitution that occurred during 2016, first year of new legislation implementation.
In accordance with its efforts to establish an adequate institutional system for the protection of women and children victims of domestic, sexual and partner violence, the Autonomous Women's Center submitted comments and proposals for amendments to the Law on Free Legal Aid published in July 2018.
Proposed amendments to the Law on Changes and Amendments to the Law on Social Protection seriously jeopardize the interests of users and beneficiaries of social protection services, limiting basic human rights and introducing forced labor, as the social protection system is centralized contrary to the recommendations of the European Commission on the decentralization of the social welfare system protection.
The Autonomous Women’s Center (AWC) submitted a letter to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development and the Institute for the Advancement of Education in which it states that the new Curriculum for the First Grade of Grammar School indicates a missed opportunity for the integration of gender related topics and the gender perspective into the content of mandatory and optional school subjects, as well as into the general recommendations for the achievement of the Curriculum.
Within the public debate on the Draft Law on Gender Equality, the Autonomous Women's Center prepared comments on the new text of the Draft. General comments relate primarily to the need to harmonize legal provisions with international treaties ratified by Serbia, to deletion of the concept of multiple discrimination in the new text of the Draft, definition of concepts, and establishment of incomparably lower standards than those set out in the previous Draft.
The Law on Asylum and Temporary Protection, adopted by the National Assembly on March 22, 2018, adopted some of the amendments made by the Autonomous Women's Center to the draft of this law, of which the most important one is the recognition of gender-based violence as an act of persecution. Most of the amendments concern harmonization with the provisions of the Council of Europe Convention against Violence against Women in relation to the recognition of gender-based violence as the basis for the granting of refugee protection and the introduction of gender sensitive decision-making procedures on asylum applications.
Key recommendations after monitoring the implementation of the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence for the period January-March 2018 conducted by the Autonomous Women's Center relate to the necessity of ensuring the conditions for the participation of victims of violence at meetings of the Groups for Coordination and Cooperation, providing not only sufficient competent police employees, but also organizational solutions that free them from other tasks, as well as instructions and expert support for the implementation of the Law based on the depth analysis of data.
The prEUgovor coalition presented the latest independent report on Serbia's progress in implementing policies in the areas covered by chapters 23 and 24 of the European integration, as well as an assessment of the approach of the Government of Serbia and the European Union to reforms in the field of the rule of law.
After the first three independent monthly reports, the fourth independent report of the Autonomous Women's Center on the implementation of the Law on the Prevention of Domestic Violence relates to the three-month period from September to November 2017.