Torture and ill-treatment is a shameful thing for any society.
In order to prevent torture and to draw public attention to the issue of torture the IRC has organized a campaign of writing letters to law firms in different parts of Ukraine (265 letters were sent in 2013).
Similar letters were sent to local public health facilities (45 letters were sent in 2013).
In those letters, we asked lawyers to inform the IRC of ill-treatment and torture cases that they could observe in their practice. Physicians were asked to tell us about cases of torture or ill-treatment in relation to their patients.
As a result: we received 173 responses from law firms, particularly in the 28 cases they reported about evidences of torture or ill-treatment of detainees and prisoners in detention centers on the part of law enforcement authorities. Messages from any of the doctors we have not received.
In order to prevent torture and ill-treatment IRC conducts tutorials and trainings in hospitals with limited access, where such cases of abuse are potentially possible (Cherkasy Regional Neuropsychiatric Hospital in city of Smila; Kiev Ambulance Station, Kyiv Psycho-Neurological Hospital № 1, Ivano-Frankivsk Regional Neuropsychiatric Hospital, etc.). These institutions conducted training for medical personnel of psychiatric hospitals, clinics, ambulances.
In these studies a special attention was paid to the problem of understanding of violence as a form of discrimination, as well as methods of violence and ill-treatment prevention by medical personnel.
For medical teams of Kiev Metro Ambulance Station such trainings were necessary because the doctors and their medical assistants - are those who first to face the facts of torture and ill-treatment in respect of citizens during their arrest and detention by law enforcement.
The training was focused on the rights and obligations of medical personnel with regard to documentation of violence and torture on the part of law enforcement officials. Discussion of this topic has always a lot of questions and comments pointing to the lack of personnel’s specific knowledge in protection of human rights.
From time to time IRC conducts discussions and trainings on the topic of “burnout” and other indirect traumatic effects on employees who work with persons exposed to tortures and ill-treatment. Many professionals from other social organizations, who render medical assistant to injured patients, take part in such discussions. We also make such tutorials to families of the victims.
Personnel of IRC actively cooperate with mass media and regularly take part in international conferences on issues relating to protection of human rights.