Support for women survivors of violence; Monitoring the implementation of public policies and proposals for changes in laws and regulations; Proposals for changes to the law and advocacy; Monitoring the process of Serbia's EU accession; Education of professionals and support for the development of a model of coordinated community action; Networking and solidarity; Monitoring and responding to media reporting on violence against women; Femicide; Solidarity at work; Raising public awareness about violence against women.
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The work of Autonomous Women's Center in 2014 was marked by a series of activist actions on the streets. Over 10,000 citizens joined us through the campaign “I sign”. We got a new group of volunteers, created a mobile application I’m Safe and organized Deli Monday. In the area of advocacy, we stopped passing the bad solutions of the Law of Free Legal Aid and advocated for a number of legislative changes in order to conform legislation with the Convention against Violence towards Women of the Council of Europe.
In 2013, the Autonomous Women's Centre celebrated its 20th anniversary with a number of actions and activities in order to draw the attention of decision makers to the protection and prevention of violence against women by the state, as well as citizens to contribute to the creation of zero tolerance for violence.
Autonomous Women’s Centre had influenced directly on the Government to increase its responsibility for the implementation of laws and policies through monitoring its own policies and reports on the results of research and analysis of various national and international bodies. This is a model of quality influence on government policy and drawing attention of decision-makers, bearing in mind that there is a tendency to marginalize the knowledge and experience of women's groups and non-governmental organizations in general.
Thanks to the efforts of women's organizations, feminist principles are incorporated in strategic documents and recommendations. Autonomous Women’s Centre is recognized as a leading organization in the field of countering violence against women in the family context (public policy, education and expertise).
This year, for the first time, we submitted an appeal to the Constitutional Court against the decision by which the specific model of visits with minor children was abled, and the process was successfully completed. We led a working group that has developed a unique record of cases of domestic violence.
The biggest success in this year was the adoption of amendments to the Law on Amendments to the Criminal Code (increased penalties for domestic violence) prepared by the Autonomous Women's Center in cooperation with the Women's Research Center and Victimology Society of Serbia, which were proposed to the Republic of Serbia Assembly by the Ombudsperson.
We worked on the development of a model of coordinated action in the field of prevention and protection from domestic violence in several municipalities in Serbia and Belgrade. Numerous professionals from the field of education participated in the Council of Europe Campaign "Stop violence against women".
This year, 260 women participated in self-help groups that we organized, 1670 women with experience of violence turned to us for an advice or help, we realized cooperation with 10 municipalities, and education seminars for the judiciary professionals in Belgrade and Nis.
The most important event of 2005 was the adoption of the Family Law, which enabled obtaining a measure of protection to women who are victims of domestic violence. Lawyera of our legal team in the first 5 months of implementation of the law had written 12 lawsuits with a measure of protection against domestic violence.
We continued to give support to women who are victims of violence individually and through self-help groups, legal assistance and representation in court. We educated professionals of the public services in Belgrade, and representatives of health services in Serbia. We worked with activists from women's groups from Leskovac, Valjevo, Gnjilane, Prizren and North Mitrovica.
This year in March, for the first time, the crime of domestic violence was introduced in Serbia! The Campaign 16 Days had a slogan REACT! and we promoted the new legal possibilities for punishment of the abusers.
This year we lobbied for the introduction of domestic violence as a criminal offense, and the Campaign 16 Days of activism was focussed on calls for the state to take responsibility for protecting their citizens. During the lobbying activities we had good cooperation with the female MPs in the Republican Parliament.
This report is about the history of women's organization since 1991, the establishment of the Autonomous Women's Center Against Sexual Violence in 1993 and women's solidarity in deeds.