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“Friendly interrogation of specific groups of victims, including children, and the new legal regulations – standards and challenges”

przyjazny-pokoj-przesluchan-dzieciFriendly interrogation of vulnerable witnesses, including children – this is the leitmotiv of the meeting between the judges from the entire country and the representatives of the Ministry of the Nobody’s Children Foundation, held on 9 October 2014 in the Ministry of Justice.

The actions aiming at ensuring special protection to the children, who as the victims or witnesses are particularly vulnerable to the effects of secondary victimization, is one of the priorities of the Ministry of Justice. Therefore, the Ministry joined the Coalition for Child Friendly Interrogation already in 2007 and involved in the procedure of certification of friendly interrogation rooms for juvenile witnesses.

Draft act on the protection of victim and witness in criminal proceedings is one of the measures ensuring safety to vulnerable groups of victims, including children and sexual abuse victims currently drawn-up by the Ministry of Justice.

In addition, with regard to entrance of the amended Code of Criminal Procedure and the Ordinance of the Minister of Justice on the manner of preparation of one-off interrogation and the conditions to be met by the premises intended for such interrogations into force, since 27 January 2014 juvenile witnesses up to 18 years of age as well as all victims of crimes against sexual freedom and morality shall be protected by one-off interrogation in friendly rooms.

Within the Strengthening the position of crime victims and support for witnesses in criminal proceedings project currently executed in the Ministry of Justice, establishment of the subsequent, at least 20, interrogation rooms is planned.