The publication of the policy paper Anti-Discrimination Law: Implementation Mechanisms took place on the 19th of December 2012 during a conference held at Hotel Prishtina, which was attended by staff of institutions, civil society, the Ombudsperson and international organisations.
The policy paper considers existing implementation of the Anti-Discrimination Law and the Law on Gender Equality in Kosovo and their effectiveness. Additionally, it considers international standards in this field, as wells as referring to such implementation mechanisms that exist a number of countries in the region and beyond.
The conference was opened by Miss Raba Gjoshi – Executive Director of Youth Initiative for Human Rights – Kosovo, whereas the findings of the report were presented by the author Miss Natyra Avdiu – Human Rights Project Coordinator of Youth Initiative for Human Rights – Kosovo. A number of panelists also contributed to the conference including: Ms. Suzana Novoberdaliu (Chairwoman of the Human Rights Committee, Assembly of Kosovo), Mr. Sami Kurteshi (Ombudsperson of Kosovo), Ms. Sadete Demaj-Kajtazi (Office for Good Governance) and Mr. Nedim Osmanagic (Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights – stand alone office Kosovo).
During their presentations Ms. Novoberdaliu reported on the work of the Committee including the monitoring of the Anti-Discrimination Law, regarding which a report will be published. Additionally, Ms. Novoberdaliu reiterated that as the law cannot be implemented, it should be amended and implementation strategies should be postponed until such amendments take place. Mr. Kurteshi spoke about discrimination cases his office has handled and the limited mandate his office has in this field. Whereas Ms. Demnaj-Kajtazi reported that the Governmnet of Kosovo has included the Anti-Discrimination Law in legislative agenda for 2013 to be amended and that her office looks forward to working with all stakeholders. While Mr. Osmanagic noted that this work by YIHR KS is a good tool for decision makers to use in future amendments and his office can offer expertise in future steps.
During discussions the various mechanisms that exist in other countries in the region were discussed in more detail such as the example of Bulgaria.
Overall the conference provided a good opportunity to discuss implementation mechanisms in this area and to share the latest developments. YIHR KS will continue to work with all stakeholders in order to ensure that the Anti-Discrimination Law provides effective protection for all.