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Hate crime response training for Ministry of Interior officers

LGBTI organization Deystvie conducted the first ever training for police officers on responding to homophobic and transphobic hate crimes. It was held at Hotel Aquatonic in Velingrad in the period 04 - 06.06.20219.

It was attended by 54 police officers - representatives from 27 Police Departments in the country, and the speakers were the Commission for Protection against Discrimination, the Academy of the Ministry of Interior, Krasimir Kanev from the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee, Marja Lust and Yanitsa Bakalova from Pink Police from the Netherlands, Goran Staton from the Hate Crime Unit Forces of the Police in Sweden, Borislav Dimitrov - human rights activist. The facilitator of the event was Maria Alkalay.

As a result of their participation in the training the police officers acquired the following skills:

- Have a basic understanding of the stereotyping process and its relationship to exclusionary characteristics such as gender, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation and physical ability;

- be challenged to consider the reasons for the persistence of stereotypes in society, the function they serve, the relationship to social perceptions and prejudice;

- have a basic understanding of the concepts of prejudice and discrimination;

- have a basic understanding of the concept of vulnerability and of the different social groups that fall into this categorisation;

- be familiar with the analysis of discriminatory treatment and the establishment of responsibility;

- be able to identify discrimination arising from impaired communication;

- understand the social barriers and obstacles to access to services and the exercise of fundamental rights;

- learn about the diversity of case law from the ECtHR.

The three-day workshop was made possible with the financial support of the Justice Works program of the American Bar Association. We would also like to thank the U.S. Embassy Sofia American Embassy and the Department of the Interior.

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