Prisoners and former prisoners are among the most vulnerable groups worldwide. In April 2017, the DVV International Office in Tajikistan, together with its partners, launched the EU-funded project “Human rights protection for prisoners and ex-prisoners”.
The two-year project aims to help detainees and former detainees in Tajikistan to exercise their social, economic and cultural rights. It will be implemented by DVV International together with the civil society organisations “Bureau of Human Rights” and “Jahon”, both based in Dushanbe.
In the framework of the project, access and availability to educational offers will be improved for female prisoners in Nurek and for male prisoners in Yavan. They will be shown ways to earn their own income and to reintegrate themselves into society after imprisonment. A further objective is to sensitise both state institutions and the general public to the rights of prisoners and ex-prisoners, thus creating an enabling environment for their reintegration.
In addition, the legal support and counselling for former prisoners will be improved. This is to be achieved by the expansion and bettering of the social reintegration referral mechanisms between civil society organisations and national as well as local public institutions. In the future, prisoners and former prisoners will be able to be systematically referred to social services, free legal aid centres and crisis centres in order to obtain appropriate professional legal advice and social assistance. To achieve this, in ten cities, all the actors involved, including district police officers, penal institution staff, as well as employees of legal support centres and the employment department, will receive training in special seminars.
The project is financed by the European Commission (75%) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (25%) with a total budget of just below 540,000 Euro.
The project will follow through with the successful experience gained during the EU-funded project “SECRET: social-economic and cultural rights of prisoners and ex-prisoners in Tajikistan”, which was implemented by DVV International and its partners from 2014 to 2016.