The Judicial Reform and Institutional Strengthening (JURIST) Project will hold a one day consultation with regional Bar Associations on Friday April 7, 2017 in Trinidad to discuss the development of Model Guidelines for Sexual Offence Cases.
The guidelines form part of a comprehensive approach that seeks to address issues faced at the investigative, pre-trial and adjudicatory phases, as well as offenders’ rehabilitation and management. The proposed outcomes are as follows:
• Increased public confidence, including survivors and witnesses, in the justice system as it relates to the handling of sexual violence cases;
• Improved response to the survivor that will enable their full participation in the justice system, increase offender accountability and reduce secondary victimisation;
• Trained and skilled cadre of cross-sectional professionals including judges, court personnel, police and attorneys to efficiently handle sexual violence cases, survivors and witnesses;
• Establishment of a model specialised court with well trained and experienced personnel, and the necessary technology;
• Speedy adjudication of cases and reduced case backlogs over time; and
• Documented best practices and lessons learned to encourage and inform other countries in the region to adopt the guidelines and practices used by the justice system to respond to sexual assault cases.