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Judicial Reform

Judicial reform has turned into one of the biggest challenges faced by country after the democratic changes in 1989 and is still in the focus of the public agenda. Ever since it initiated the Judicial Reform Initiative (1999), the Law Program has been actively working to facilitate the establishment of an effective, transparent and accountable judiciary. Efforts range from drafting overall strategic policy documents to developing research-based reform recommendations in specific areas such as structure and management of the judiciary, internal oversight mechanisms, recruitment and promotion policies, anti-corruption, etc.

 


Events

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Countering Extortion Racketeering in Bulgaria: Examining the Evidence and Devising Appropriate Measures
During the 1990s, Bulgaria experienced a significant upsurge in extortion racketeering, a crime which came to define the decade. Even though rates have decreased in recent years, the problem appears to persist. On 27 October 2016, the Center for the Study of Democracy organized a round table discussion on Countering Extortion Racketeering: Problem areas and Possible Measures. The meeting was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Interior, General Directorate National Police, General Directorate Combatting Organised Crime and the Sofia Appellate Court. more »
 
Improving the registration of non-profit legal entities
NGOs in Bulgaria are registered in more than 20 different registers, yet there is a lack of accessible, up-to-date and reliable information on their activities. This is one of the main conclusions of the Center for the Study of Democracy’s analysis dedicated to the reform of NGOs’ registration. The report was presented at the roundtable ‘Improving the registration of non-profit legal entities’ organised by the Center. The event was attended by representatives of the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Justice, the Registry Agency, as well as NGOs, the IT sector and the media. more »
 
Civil Society in Support of Vulnerable Groups
Victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, persons in need of international protection and those deprived of liberty are among the vulnerable groups in need of the support of the civic sector in their relationships with institutions. Their problems were at the forefront of the discussion at the working meeting ‘Civil Society in Support of Vulnerable Groups’, organized on 25 February 2016 by the Center for the Study of Democracy. The main aim of the meeting was finalizing the concept on more effective participation of NGOs in the system of support of vulnerable groups, developed by CSD experts. Representatives of NGOs, involved in supporting the four vulnerable groups, took part in the event. more »
 
Vulnerable Groups between the Civil Society and the State
Victims of domestic violence and human trafficking, persons in need of international protection and those deprived of liberty are among the vulnerable groups in need of the support of the civic sector in their relationships with institutions. Their problems were at the forefront of the discussion at the roundtable ‘Vulnerable Groups between the Civil Society and the State’, organized on 7 October 2015 by the Center for the Study of Democracy. Representatives of institutions and NGOs, involved in supporting the four vulnerable groups, took part in the event. more »
 

Publications

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CSD Policy Brief No. 61: Drug users in prison: Norway’s experience and Bulgaria’s challenges
For all criminal offences related to drugs, even for possession of small quantities intended for personal use, the main sanction according to Bulgarian criminal law is imprisonment. Unlike in Norway, non-custodial penalties in Bulgaria such as probation have extremely limited scope of application for drug-related offences. At the same time, other alternatives to imprisonment are virtually non-existent. more »
 
Concept for more effective civic participation in support of vulnerable groups
The concept for more effective civic participation in support of four vulnerable groups aims to identify legislative changes, improvement of practices and policy development by decision makers and the civil society to facilitate vulnerable communities in their interaction with state institutions and establish effective support mechanisms. more »
 
Memoranda with recommendations to institutions, working with vulnerable groups
The initiative ‘Civic Organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State’ encompasses four vulnerable groups: persons deprived of their liberty, victims of human trafficking and domestic violence, as well as persons in need of international protection and other vulnerable foreigners. Although very different, those communities encounter similar problems in their relations with institutions: insufficient human and financial resourcing, work practices not always meeting the needs of vulnerable groups. Thus, oftentimes those persons rely on civil society for improving their status, including through assistance before the respective competent authorities. more »
 
CSD Policy Brief No. 59: Registration of Non-profit Organisations: Legal Framework and Recommendations for Reform
Improvement of registration of non-profit organisations (NPOs) – associations and foundations, is a necessary precondition for strengthening the civil society and increasing its transparency and accountability. An easy and simple registration procedure, with no duplication of information and functioning automatic exchange of data, is an important stage in the establishment of a modern registration system. It also guarantees the availability of reliable and up-to-date information on all registered entities. more »
 


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