Latvia develops recommendations, examines the Icelandic experience with exploratory interviews at the Barnahus
Nov 6, 2018

On 3 October 2018 social services practitioners met to discuss the possible structure of recommendations for a procedure for cases when criminal proceedings are not initiated. Key experts will draft the recommendations, which are developed as part of PROMISE 2 and will be implemented in Riga region in Center Dardedze as part of the BADEV project. It is hoped the recommendations could be finished in February 2019 and therefore implementation could start in March 2019.

On 6 November 2018, participants from the previous roundtables met again along with participants from the State Police, State Inspectorate for Children’s Rights, Ministry of Justice, State Probation service, and Forensic Expertise Office. The roundtable was opened by Laila Gravere, head of department at the Ombudsman’s office, who emphasized the importance of maximizing efforts to provide safe conditions and a safe environment for the child’s disclosure.

At the roundtable, Margrét Kristín Magnúsdóttir and Paola Cardenas from Barnahus Iceland shared their experiences and insights for the legal and practical procedures of exploratory interviews. The main tasks discussed included:

  • the structure of the exploratory interview
  • the protocols used
  • the minimum “set of facts” during the interview, which is sufficient to report to the police afterwards (including how and when the interview is stopped)
  • who reports to the police, including the recording in the report
  • in what time frame should the forensic interview be carried out.

Participants at the roundtable highlighted the need in Latvia to clarify the roles between the Social Service and Custody Court, and to clarify which body is responsible for the child from the beginning to the end of the investigation.

Both meetings were organised by Centre Dardedze as part of the PROMISE 2 project.

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