From February to May 2016, the Atlantic Initiative and DCAF began organizing meetings featuring panels of judges to discuss the judicial handling of domestic violence cases. The aim was to enable judicial officials, with professional and technical support from the Atlantic Initiative and DCAF, to consider how existing legal and institutional frameworks for judges and the judiciary might contribute to improving the judicial response to domestic violence in BiH.
The working groups, composed of 37 judges, in three regular meetings discussed individual and group proposals and initiatives with the goal to institutionalize a consistent and efficient judicial approach to cases of domestic violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Working groups emerged as the result of a conference dedicated to new practices in the consideration of cases of domestic violence and a joint workshop of judges who applied to participate in the working groups on “The exposure of children to domestic violence.”
The working groups have developed The Practice Guide: Domestic Violence, whose purpose is to serve as a supplement to Judicial Benchbook: Considerations for Domestic Violence Case Evaluation in BiH (2014). The new guide is a unique resource material that judges can use to inform their own considerations of domestic violence cases.
The results of the work of three working groups and common proposals adopted by consensus of judges were presented on 20th of May 2016 in the framework of the final domestic violence conference.
The regular working group meetings, The Practice Guide: Domestic Violence, and the final conference are organized under the auspices of the project “Gender and Judiciary in BiH”, and were supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as by the Embassy of the Kingdom of Sweden in Bosnia and Herzegovina.