Civil Society as an Important Partner of the Police and Citizens

In 2016, PSSI, with support of the Czech Ministry of the Interior, conducted a project in Uzhhorod, titled “Civil society as an important partner of the police and citizens”. The project is dedicated to improving interaction between the population and the police, community policing, and human trafficking issue in order to support Ukrainian police reform.

 

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In April 2016, PSSI's experts conducted a two-week research trip to eastern Ukraine in order to identify local needs and key security challenges. This involved a series of meetings with local authorities, security and police agencies, members of civil society, activists and local journalists. Based on these findings, a number of topics and themes overlapping both the Ukrainian demand and PSSI expert capacity were identified, namely the challenge of improving cyber security, strengthening civil society development, and tackling hybrid and information warfare.

In 2016 more than hundred policemen, cadets and several hundreds of NGO personnel and volunteers attended PSSI’s lectures and trainings focusing on the above mentioned areas of expertise. 

Between October 11–14, a number of Czech experts held a series of discussions with Ukrainian counterparts in Uzhhorod about the role of communication between civil society and police. During the meetings members of the patrol police were provided with techniques on how to address crime prevention; namely crime maps, community policing and examples of good practice in combating human trafficking. It is important to highlight that the new patrol police has become highly professionalized and motivated. Additionally, an informal gathering was organized with the expert community from the Uzhhorod National University.

The discussions were realised within the project supported by the Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic and coordinated by PSSI Fellow Petr Pojman. They were designed to contribute to sharing best practices and lessons learned between the Czech Republic and Ukraine.

Among the Czech representatives were Soňa Svobodová, Chief commissioner - lecturer in the Department of police training and service training, Czech Police; Markéta Hronková, director of La Strada, an organization that systematically tackles the problems of human trafficking and exploitation; and Ondřej Skalník, project coordinator at the Otevřená Společnost.

Main partners on the Ukrainian side were Gromadskij Konvent, Centre for strategic cooperation, and Patrol Police of Uzhhorod and Mukachevo.

In 2017, visit of Ukrainian NGO and academic delegation to Czechia took place. The main topic of the visit was sharing experience in the field of cooperation of nongovernment organizations and police. The delegation visited the Municipal Police in Brno, the Criminal Police Office and the Police Presidium in Prague and also Social and Rehabilitation centre Klichov. A presentation of social non-governmental projects also took place. An important part of the visit was a Round Table in RFE: