Legal Protection against Discrimination in South East Europe

About the Project

The countries in South East Europe (SEE) have very comprehensive laws on anti-discrimination, most of which meet the international, CoE and EU standards. However, just like in most of the EU member states awareness for these laws is rather low and the institutional and structural framework conditions are not conducive to effective implementation of the legal provisions. The aim of the project is to improve the capacities of relevant stakeholders such as equality bodies, ombud institutions, state authorities, courts as well as legal practitioners to act against discrimination in SEE. The project supports improving the quality of education on anti-discrimination anchored in legal training, establishing a regional dialogue between relevant stakeholders and facilitating national and regional exchange of experiences and transfer of successful solutions/models on anti-discrimination. The project is implemented by way of three work packages (WP): The implementation of a regional study on “Legal protection against discrimination” (WP 1), facilitation of developing regional approaches to combat discrimination (WP 2) and establishment of common regional standards for anti-discrimination curricula at law faculties (WP 3).

The Ludwig Boltzmann Institut für Grund- und Menschenrechte (LBI-GMR) focuses on the research conducted within WP 1, which identifies good practices as well as challenges and systemic obstacles for effective legal protection against discrimination in the SEE countries. The study looks into the implementation of anti-discrimination provisions by equality bodies, ombud institutions and the judiciary covering aspects like access to justice, social awareness of legal protection and other practical aspects. Furthermore, the study will map out whether law departments at universities in the SEE countries offer courses on anti-discrimination law or integrate anti-discrimination aspects in their educational programs. The LBI-GMR has developed the structure for the country reports, the guidelines for implementing the desk research as well as the interviews. Based on the country reports, the LBI-GMR will develop a policy paper including recommendations on how the capacities of relevant stakeholders such as equality bodies, ombud institutions, state authorities, courts as well as legal practitioners can be strengthened in order to be able to more effectively and efficiently implement legal provisions on anti-discrimination and support victims of discrimination in gaining access to justice more easily.

Project Data

Country: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia
Persons involved: Barbara Liegl (Project Leader), Katrin Wladsch (Expert)
Contact persons: Barbara Liegl
Lead Organisation: Open Regional Fund for South East Europe – Legal Reform (GIZ), DE
Partner Organisations: Ludwig Boltzmann Institut für Grund- und Menschenrechte (LBI-GMR) • South East European Law School Network (SEELS) • Judicial Training Institutions of SEE • Equality bodies of SEE
Project start: 10/2015
Project end: 08/2016
Funded by: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ)
Programme Line LBI-GMR: Rule of Law and Public Sector Reform