Final Conference

On 9th of June 2014 the International Conference „Improving protection of victims’ rights: access to legal aid” took place. The Conference was held at facilities of the Faculty of Law and Administration of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań and was a final activity of the project „Improving protection of victims’ rights: access to legal aid”, co – financed by European Commission, which addresses the priority  “Supporting victims of crime (VICS)”. Partners of the project were: Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań (Poland) – the Leader, Sabiedriskas Politicas Centrs PROVIDUS (Latvia), Center for the Study of Democracy (Bulgaria) and Consorzio Interuniversitario per la Formazione (Italy).

 

The Conference brought together European experts on victims’ rights – prominent scholars and practitioners delivering necessary help, protection and assistance to victims of crime. The main goal of the Conference was to consider the European Legal Aid System, and legal aid system in Members States, i.a. in Bulgaria, England and Wales, Italy, Latvia, Poland and Spain. The Conference served also as an international discussion platform for the challenges and recommendations of the legal aid system in Europe.

 

Firstly, participants were welcomed and introduced by Prof. Paweł Wiliński, the Scientific Coordinator of the project. Further on, JM Rector Prof. Jacek Witkoś and Prof. Roman Budzinowski – the Dean of Faculty of Law and Administration welcomed participants and stressed out the importance of undertakings such as this project. In the first part of the conference, Deputy Minister of Justice – Stanisław Chmielewski, also underlined crucial meaning of helping victims and he emphasized the challenges of this process. Then, Marta Kolendowska-Matejczuk, Ph.D., from the Office of the Human Rights Defence took the floor, giving the perspective of one of the most important bodies called to take necessary measures to create the system of legal aid in Poland.

 

During the second part, chaired by Małgorzata Wąsek-Wiaderek, Hab. Ph. D, from the John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin in Poland, representatives of the partners of the project – Piotr Karlik, Ph.D., from Adam Mickiewicz University (Poland), Sanite Sile from PROVIDUS (Latvia), Miriana Ilcheva from Center for the Study of Democracy (Bulgaria)Karen Hough from Consorzio Interuniversitario per la Formazione (Italy), project coordinator Graciela Fuentes, Ph.D. (AMU) and scientific coordinator Prof. Paweł Wiliński (AMU) took the floor. Each one of them, exposed the most crucial issues arising in their own country, connected with helping victims of crime. Partners also presented the structure of the legal aid given to victims in their countries. Moreover, Graciela Fuentes, Ph.D., emphasized the need to raise public awareness of victims legal rights. In addition, in this module Prof. Paweł Wiliński revealed the recommendations for European Legal Aid System.

 

In the third part of the conference, chaired by Ph. D. Natalia Buchowska from Adam Mickiewicz University, challenges of the legal aid system for victims were exposed.  Firstly, Sara Chrzanowska from the Procedural Criminal Law Unit Victims Team, DG Justice, European Commission explained the European Union legislation concerning the rights of victims. Challenges of the legal aid system for victims were also shown from British and Spanish perspectives by Prof. Louis Taylor from Nottingham Law School and  Prof. Ágata María Sanz Hermida from La Universidad de Castilla-La Manch in Spain. During the third part of the conference, the Directive 2012/29/EU Establishing Minimum Standards on the Rights, Support and Protection of Victims of Crime were also talked over by Prof. Cezary Kulesza from Council for Victims. This part was devoted to legal aid challenges of the Member States and the harmonization of the national legal orders with the European Union norms.

 

The challenges and recommendations of the legal aid system in Europe were discussed in the next part of the Conference. The comments were given by Mikołaj Pietrzak –  President of the Human Rights Commission from the Polish Bar Council, ECBA, Michał Lewoc from Ministry of Justice in Poland and Barbara Grabowska – the representative of  Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights.

After the lunch break, the final part of the Conference took place. It was chaired by Agnese Lesinska. It focused on the indicators for the development of the legal aid system for victims. Vania Costa Ramos – the lawyer from Portugal presented the Portugal system of legal aid given to victims. Simone de Blasi – lawyer from Italy, focused on the communication as a vital tool for improving legal aid system. Next, Hristo Botev – attorney-at-law from the Sofia Bar Association form Bulgaria stressed out the education as an important indicator for the development of the help delivered. In the end, Diana Ziediņa – a mediatior from Latvia focused on the importance of mediation in criminal procedure and advantages of using this tool in delivering help to victims.

 

In the end, the final comments and closing remarks were made by Ph. D. Marta Kolendowska – Matejczuk from the Office of the Human Rights Defender, Agnieszka Lisek – representative of the Polish Center for Mediation and Tomasz Piechowiak -President of Subvenia Victima.

 

The Conference not only brought together experts in victims’ rights – prominent scholars dealing with victims of crime and practitioners delivering necessary help, protection and assistance to victims of crime in their everyday practice but also judges, prosecutors, counsels, legal advisors and students from Adam Mickiewicz University.

 

With the encouragement and the engagement of partners as well as representatives of the European Commission, scholars and practitioners from different Member States the Conference could have been successfully held.

 

CONFERENCE PROGRAMME

JUNE 9th, 2014, POZNAŃ, POLAND

 

Improving protection of victims’ rights: access to legal aid

Venue:

Collegium Iuridicum Novum

Auditorium Maximum (1st floor)

Al. Niepodległości 53, Poznań

www.prawo.amu.edu.pl/en

 

9:30-10:00    Registration

10:00 – 10:30   Introductions and welcome

  • JM Rector Prof. Jacek Witkoś, AdamMickiewiczUniversity (AMU)
  • Prof. Roman Budzinowski, Dean of Faculty of Law and Administration (AMU)
  • Stanisław Chmielewski, Deputy Minister of Justice
  • Marta Kolendowska-Matejczuk, Ph.D., The Office of the Human Rights Defender
  • Prof. Paweł Wiliński, Project Scientific coordinator

 

10:30 – 11:30 Access to legal aid for victims in EU member states

Chair: Małgorzata Wąsek-Wiaderek, Hab. Ph.D. (The John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin, Poland)

  • Piotr Karlik (AMU), Access to legal aid in Poland
  • Miriana Ilcheva (CSD), Access to legal aid in Bulgaria
  • Sanite Sile (Providus), Access to legal aid in Latvia
  • Karen Hough (Coinfo), Access to legal aid in Italy
  • Graciela Fuentes, Ph.D., (AMU), Increasing public awareness of victims legal rights
  • Prof. Paweł Wiliński(AMU), Recommendations for European Legal Aid System

 

11:30 – 11:45 Discussion

 

11.45-12.15  Coffee break

 

12.15-13.15 Challenges of the Legal Aid System for Victims

Chair: Natalia Buchowska, Ph. D. (Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland)

  • Sara Chrzanowska, (Procedural Criminal Law Unit Victims Team, DG Justice, European Commission), EU Legislation in relation to victims
  • Prof. Cezary Kulesza (Poland, Council for Victims), Directive 2012/29/EU Establishing Minimum Standards on the Rights, Support and Protection of Victims of Crime
  • Prof. Louis Taylor (Nottingham Law School, UK), Challenges for the Legal Aid System for Victims from British Perspective
  • ·       Prof. Ágata María Sanz Hermida (La Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Spain) Challenges for the Legal Aid System for Victims from Spanish Perspective

 

13.15-13.45 Comments and Discussion

  • Mikołaj Pietrzak, (President of the Human Rights Commission, The Polish Bar Council, ECBA)
  • Michał Lewoc (Ministry of Justice, Poland)
  • Barbara Grabowska, Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights

 

13.45 – 14.45 Lunch

 

14.45-15.45  Indicators for the development of the Legal Aid System for Victims

Chair: Agnese Lesinska

  • Vania Costa Ramos (Portugal), Development of the Legal Aid System for Victims in Portugal
  • Simone de Blasi (Italy), Development of the Legal Aid System for Victims. Communication
  • Hristo Botev (Bulgaria), Development of the Legal Aid System for Victims. Education
  • Diana Ziediņa (Latvia), Development of the Legal Aid System for Victims. Mediation

 

15.45-16.15 Comments and Discussion

  • Marta Kolendowska-Matejczuk, Ph.D., The Office of the Human Rights Defender
  • Agnieszka Lisek, PolishCenter for Mediation
  • Tomasz Piechowiak, Subvenia Victima

16.15  Summary, Closing remarks

 

Media patronage:

logoradiomerkury student_prawa_ logo(1)ZU_logo_Minion Pro.eps gif_ep image001

logo urbano pomaranczpoprawny logo tiff

 

 

Please find new artciles published by project partner AMU – Leader concerning the conference

 

  1. http://prawo.amu.edu.pl/strona-glowna/content-wpia-gony/midzynarodowa-konferencja-improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid
  2. http://studenci.amu.edu.pl/content-s/midzynarodowa-konferencja-pt.-improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid
  3. http://doktoranci.amu.edu.pl/content-doktorant/midzynarodowa-konferencja-pt.-improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid
  4.  http://pracownicy.amu.edu.pl/content-p/midzynarodowa-konferencja-improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid
  5. http://www.brpo.gov.pl/pl/patronaty-rpo
  6. http://poprawny.pl/index.php?itemid=4870&catid=47
  7.  http://studentprawa.pl/
  8. http://studentprawa.pl/patronaty/item/1461-miedzynarodowa-konferencja-pt-improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid
  9.  http://studentprawa.pl/patronaty
  10. http://www.edukacjaprawnicza.pl/aktualnosci/a/pokaz/c/aktualnosc/art/improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid.html
  11. http://wa.amu.edu.pl/wa/node/5495 http://rada-adwokacka.poznan.pl/adwokat,156,63.html
  12. http://poznan.oirp.pl/aktualnosci/rok_2014/zaproszenie-na-konferencje-pt-improwing-protecction-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid-poznan-9-czerwca-2014-r