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Workshops

CHRI actively engages in facilitating supporting workshops and conferences around the Commonwealth on issues of police reform and accountability. Our workshop series have been particularly active in India and East Africa, but we have also convened conferences in West Africa and on South Asian issues.

This page lists upcoming CHRI workshops, upcoming policing conferences and provides information and background material on past CHRI workshops.

Upcoming CHRI workshops

There are no CHRI workshops currently scheduled.

Upcoming workshops

Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you would like your conference or workshop linked here.

Past CHRI workshops

Click on the relevant workshop to jump to more information and background material.

HURINET-Uganda Police training workshop for civil society organisations
Entebbe, Uganda, August 2007


In August 2007, CHRI took part in a HURINET-Uganda police training workshop for civil society organisations in Uganda. Click here for a copy of the concluding statement. CHRI presentations are linked below.

Conceptual framework of policing in Africa
Daniel Woods, Coordinator, Police Reforms Programme

Civil society and police reform in Uganda
Daniel Woods, Coordinator, Police Reforms Programme

Police accountability and effectiveness in Eastern Africa
Kenya, June 2007

Over three days from the 11 to 13 June 2007, over sixty delegates from Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda attended a conference on Police Accountability and Effectiveness in Eastern Africa in Nairobi, Kenya. The conference was convened by the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR), the African Policing Civilian Oversight Forum (APCOF) and the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI). Delegates hailed from across civil society, national human rights institutions, police oversight agencies, judiciary, academia, government bodies, diplomatic corps, international organisations and the media. Participants met to discuss the parallels of and challenges to policing, and the importance of police accountability and oversight in the East African region.

The conference provided delegates with the opportunity to exchange their experiences of policing throughout Eastern Africa and to plan for higher levels of police accountability and effectiveness in the region. Participants recognised that police effectiveness depends upon police legitimacy in the eyes of the community; and that communities must understand the role and challenges that police face in order to ensure that that the publics' security needs are met. The conference covered three key themes that are particularly relevant to the current context of policing - elections and police accountability, counter-terrorism and police accountability, and crime and police accountability. Delegates noted that "while there was a lot of variation in these experiences across the region, there were also similarities in the opportunities and challenges to promoting police accountability and effectiveness."


Delegates proposed several points of action. They called for engagement with the African Commission for Human and Peoples' Rights in developing a specific focus on independent civilian policing oversight mechanisms, including civilian participation, as per its resolution at its 40th session; support of ongoing dialogue with international and regional mechanisms and awareness raising and engagement with media to accurately report all sides of community and police experiences. Participants also agreed to lobby for public and political support to promote the establishment of effective oversight mechanisms and called on governments to support and encourage the engagement of the police, civil society and other actors towards realising police effectiveness and accountability.

The programme for the conference can be accessed here, while the concluding statement can be found here. Presentations given by CHRI staff are also available below.

CHRI presentations

Opening remarks - Police accountability and effectiveness in Eastern Africa
Daniel Woods, Coordinator, Police Reforms Programme

Counter-terrorism and police accountability - Theme paper
Tessa Boyd-Caine, Coordinator, CHOGM Report 2007

A People's Campaign for Better Policing- India National Workshop
India, April 2007

On the 27th and 28th of April 2007, CHRI facilitated a national workshop in New Delhi on the implementation of and compliance with the Supreme Court directives on police reform. Over 60 representatives from states such as Orissa, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Maharashtra, Manipur, Bihar and Tamil Nadu attended the workshop, which was dubbed as "A People's Campaign for Better Policing". Delegates hailed from across government, civil society, media, human rights institutions and police organisations and met to discuss and debate the nature of police reform. The workshop comes at a critical time for police reform in India, as state governments scramble to pass new laws and make reform a reality, in line with directions given by the Supreme Court late last year.

The workshop provided delegates with the opportunity to plan for higher levels of accountability and civil society engagement in the police reform process. CHRI Director Maja Daruwala stated, "many police have objected to the implementation of the Supreme Court Directives, as they claim that there are already too many accountability mechanisms and bodies. The problem is that the internal disciplinary mechanisms used within the Indian Police Service are not the kinds that have the confidence and trust of the public. Every accountability mechanism that has been attempted thus far has been captured or subverted. The challenge of creating more accountability bodies and mechanisms is an issue that has to be discussed and attempts made to collectively address."

Over two days, delegates considered the challenges facing policing in India, how the Supreme Court Directives address these challenges and the varied responses of state governments. Participants engaged in intensive analysis and debate around the different approaches to reform, and discussed how tangible, positive change can be implemented at an everyday, street policing level. Participants proposed several points of action. They called for the increased mobilisation and awareness of community policing systems, recognition of the fact that Indian traditional institutions continue to play an important role in policing issues and reiterated that the reform process should be more consultative and participatory. Delegates also agreed that they would make a strong public commitment to working towards policing that upholds human rights and democratic norms and values.

The program for the 2007 Indian National Workshop can be found here, while the press release can be accessed here.

Police Reform: An Exchange of Experiences from South Asia
India, March 2007

CHRI held a regional roundtable conference on South Asian policing in New Delhi, India, on the 23rd and 24th March 2007. Fifty representatives attended the conference from countries such as India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Pakistan, the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland. Delegates hailed from across government, civil society, media, human rights institutions and police organizations and met to discuss and debate the trends, commonalities and challenges of policing in South Asia.

The roundtable provided delegates with the opportunity to plan for higher levels of police accountability and reform throughout the South Asian region. The Indian Minister for Home Affairs, Mr Shivraj Patil, opened the conference and presented the Inaugural Address in which he emphasised the importance of police reform in South Asia. Participants agreed that "it is the duty of all South Asian governments to provide their populations with safety and security in accordance with the rule of law and human rights. Present policing in the region does not ensure this." They also agreed that meaningful police reform cannot happen without public consultation.

The delegates proposed several points of action. They called for governments to immediately initiate a serious process of systemic, transparent police reform and to make a strong public commitment to working towards policing that upholds human rights and democratic norms and values. Delegates also agreed that police reform should include credible selection, transfer and promotion arrangements for police, strengthened accountability mechanisms, better performance evaluation and monitoring and training and continual retraining of police personnel.

The program for the 2007 South Asian roundtable conference is available here, while the concluding statement can be found here. The press release can be accessed here and the conference report can be downloaded here.

A list of papers presented at the roundtable is available below:

Police reform and debates in India: Selected recommendations from the National Police Commission
Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

Prakash Singh and Others vs. Union of India and Others, 22 September 2006 & 11 January 2006: Compliance with the Supreme Court Directives on Police Reform
Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

Police-Executive Relationship in Pakistan
Dr Muhammad Shoaib Suddle, Director General, National Police Bureau, Pakistan

Sri-Lanka: What police reform initiatives are possible within a dysfunctional system?
Basil Fernando, Director, Asian Human Rights Commission

Towards pro-women and child-friendly policing in Bangladesh: Our experiences
Professor Israt Shamim, President, Centre for Women and Children Studies

Police Accountability in the Maldives
Aminath Najeeb, Human Rights Association of the Maldives (registration denied since July 2004)

Regretting what might have been: A critique of the National Police Commission of Sri Lanka
Kishali Pinto Jayawardena, lawyer and legal consultant/columnist, The Sunday Times, Colombo; Deputy Director and head, Legal Unit, Law and Society Trust, Colombo

Policing in the Maldives
Mohamed Jinah, Maldives Police Service

Ingredients for a good police/executive relationship
Philip Stenning, Professor of Criminology, Centre for Criminological Research

Problems with policing in Northern Ireland
Maggie Beirne, Director, Committee on the Administration of Justice (CAJ)

A list of Power Point presentations from the conference can be accessed below:

Civil Society: integral or marginal to police reforms
Patricia Mukhim

Police-Executive Relationship in Bangladesh
Md. Mokhlesur Rahman, Deputy Inspector General Principal, Police Academy, Bangladesh

Police Reform Initiatives
Human Rights Association of the Maldives and Native Operators on Rights (NOOR)

Police Reform Initiatives in Bangladesh
N.B.K Tripura, Additional Inspector General, Bangladesh Police and National Project Director, Police Reform Program

Police Reforms: Supreme Court Directions
Prakash Singh, formerly Director General BSF, DGP Assam and DGP UP

Police Reforms in Pakistan
Mukhtar Ahmad Ali, Centre for Peace and Development Initiatives, Pakistan

Police-Executive Relationship in India
Kamal Kumar, IPS (Rtd)

Towards Pro-Women and Child Friendly Policing in Bangladesh: Our Experiences
Professor Ishrat Shamim, President, Center for Women and Children Studies, Dhaka

People's Participation in Police Reform: A Consultation for the North East of India
India,
February 2007

CHRI staff traveled to Assam on 21-22 February 2007 to run a consultation for civil society, media representatives and academics in the North East. This consultation was conducted by CHRI in partnership with the Centre for Organisation, Research & Education (CORE) Manipur, the Centre for North East Studies & Policy Research and the North East Network. The consultation was attended by representatives from Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura.

The objectives of the consultation were to:

  • Improve visibility of two current police reform initiatives, namely the Supreme Court Directives and the Model Police Act;
  • Generate strategies to monitor compliance with the Supreme Court directives in the North East states; and
  • Map the steps required to increase people's participation in the police reform process.

Click here to see Consultation Agenda. Click here to see Consultation Statement.

Police accountability in East Africa
Tanzania, June 2006

CHRI held a second regional roundtable on policing in East Africa in Arusha, Tanzania, in June 2006. The roundtable brought together delegates from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, as well as experts from Ghana, Australia and India to look at policing trends and challenges across the East African region, and within the national borders of Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. The delegates found that "reform of the police is required to provide a police service that fulfils its mandate of protecting the safety and security of all. The state has a responsibility to provide an efficient, accountable and democratic system of policing which enhances the enjoyment of rights and development."

The delegates also explored the challenges to good policing in East Africa. These challenges include police brutality and excessive use of force, outdated legal regimes, corruption, illegitimate political interference, militarisation of civilian policing bodies, partiality, impunity, internal police culture and hierarchies, lack of transparency, lack of adequate training and resources, police recruitment processes, poor service and working conditions, lack of adherence to the rule of law and lack of reform in the broader criminal justice sector.

The delegates proposed a number of points of action. They called on police, civil society and national human rights institutions to create networks and to make use of advocacy opportunities such as the 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, due to take place in Kampala, Uganda, next year. The delegates also called on governments, civil society and national human rights institutions to work towards the demilitarisation of police in East Africa, the amendment of police laws to reflect democratic principles of policing and the strengthening of police accountability mechanisms such as civilian oversight bodies.

The programme for the 2006 roundtable is available here, while the final statement is available here.

A selection of the papers given at the roundtable are available below:

Police accountability in Kenya
Debra Ajwang, Kenya Human Rights Commission

Police accountability in Kenya
Vincent Kodongo, Independent Medico-Legal Unit

Police accountability in Tanzania
Francis Kiwanga, Legal and Human Rights Centre

National Human Rights Institutions as police oversight bodies
Roselyn Karugonjo-Segawa, Uganda Human Rights Commission

National Human Rights Institutions as police oversight bodies
Rebeca Muniu, Kenya National Commission on Human Rights

Ghana Police Council
Edmund Foley, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (Africa office)

Roundtable on policing and public order in India
India, June 2006

As part of the on-going commitment to catalyse broader debate and foster more informed
discussion at the policy level on the vision of policing for 21st century democratic India, the
CHRI in conjunction with the Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) 2005 organised a roundtable on policing and public order, in New Delhi on June 10, 2006.

The delegates included 36 persons, mainly civil liberties lawyers, social activists and NGO leaders from across the country, who presented their views before the Administrative Reforms Commission, which was represented by its Chair, two Members and staff.

The Administrative Reforms Commission had been tasked by the Government of India to suggest a framework to strengthen the administrative machinery to maintain public order, in a way that is conducive to social harmony and economic development. The context for the roundtable stemmed from the desire of the ARC to have the views of civil liberties practitioners on record, who from their experience of defending constitutional values have a deep understanding of the interface between state and society, and its impact on public order.

In seeking answers to the vexing issue of policing and public order, the meeting examined state responses to disorder. Through their experiences, participants discussed the efficacy of past and present responses and the merits of enhancing the powers of the police to deal with public order problems. Seminal issues of de-linking policing from partisan politics and simultaneously making the police accountable were also discussed.

Given the fact that some of the best minds and those with the highest levels of commitment were at the roundtable, formal presentations were kept to a minimum, leaving enough time for discussions and informed interventions. The sessions were organised to focus sharply on finding viable solutions and settle on the best options for reform.

A report on the roundtable is available here.

Police oversight in Commonwealth Africa
Ghana, October 2005

CHRI held a meeting on police accountability in Africa in Ghana, in October 2005. The focus of the discussion was on different models of oversight bodies across Commonwealth Africa and the experience in different countries of advocacy towards establishing such a body, as well as details such as the establishment process, challenges faced and how those challenges were overcome, and success stories.

An information sheet provided to delegates prior to the meeting is provided here. The meeting agenda is here, and the delegates' concluding statement is here.

Media on police reform (India, March 2005)

In March 2005, CHRI, in collaboration with Press Institute of India (PII) brought together media professionals in the belief that the media can act and advocate the need for police reform both at the policy and grassroots level. The conference was facilitated in recognition of the role that the media has in deepening public understanding of the complexities of policing and the reform process.

The workshop aimed to sensitise participants on the urgent need of police reforms, educate media about the history of police reform, the resistances to it and the possibilities for a new type of policing, motivate the media to write more deeply about the underlying causes of police misbehaviour against expected standards and create a nation-wide network of media persons who will report on issues of police reform.

A report on the workshop is available here.

Police and public interface: making it happen (India, November 2004)

Policing: A human rights perspective (India, February 2004)

Click here to view a report on this roundtable. Click here to access photographs of this workshop.

Roundtable on police reforms in Chennai (India, February 2003)

Click here to view a report on this roundtable.

Roundtable on police reform in Trivandrum (India, June 2003)

Click here to view a report on this roundtable.

Force to service - policing in East Africa
Kenya, April 2003

CHRI held its first roundtable conference on policing in East Africa in Nairobi, Kenya, in April 2003, in partnership with the Kenya Human Rights Commission. The major discussion topic at the conference was how to move the East African police forces to police services.

Significant recommendations emerged, some of which were forwarded for consideration of the Kenyan National Constitutional Conference (NCC) that followed in the week immediately after the conference.

The report from the roundtable is available here, and a response to the report is available here. A selection of the papers given at the roundtable are available below:

Democratic Reform of Police---any lessons for Kenya from South Africa?
David Bruce, Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation, Johannesburg
Civilian Oversight of Police in South Africa: cases received by the Independent Complaints Directorate
David Bruce, Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation, Johannesburg

Roundtable conference on police reforms (India, October 2002)

Click here to view a report on this workshop.

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill workshop (Bhopal, India, May 2002)

Click here to view a report on this workshop.

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill workshop (Jabalpur, India, January 2002)

Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance - Eminent group discussion (India, November 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Public meeting (Itarsi, India, October 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Public meeting (Vidhisha, India, October 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Public meeting (Raisen, India, October 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Media workshop (Bhopal, India, September 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Workshop (Bhopal, India, August 2001)

Madhya Pradesh Police Bill - Workshop (Indore, India, July 2001)

Police reform workshop (Gwalior, India, April 2001)

Police reform workshop (Shimla, India, March 2001)

Police reform workshop (Hyderabad, India, August 2000)

Police reform for police officers (Delhi, India, July 2000)

Police reform workshop (Delhi, India, May 2000)

Police reform for police officers (Delhi, India, February 2000)

Police reform workshop (Bhopal, India, December 1999)

Police reform - Southern regional workshop (Hyderabad, India, August 1999)

Police reform workshop (Delhi, India, May 1999)

Police reform workshop (Delhi, India, August 1998)

 

 
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