The report on the systemic mapping of national responses to hate speech in Georgia will be launched during an online event on Monday 22 November. Priority areas to combat this phenomenon will be discussed.
The report contains an overview of the elements and dynamics of hate speech in the country and recommendations to all stakeholders on how to address it. It refers to the Council of Europe’s European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) General Policy Recommendation No. 15 on combating hate speech which stresses the importance of a comprehensive approach to tackle hate speech and the need to reconcile the right to freedom of expression with other rights, notably those of groups targeted by hate speech.
Stefan Sirbu, Deputy Head of the Council of Europe Office in Tbilisi, will chair the meeting with opening remarks by Irena Guidikova, Head of Division, Inclusion and Anti-Discrimination Programmes of the Council of Europe and Evija Kotan, Deputy Head of Political, Press and Information Section of the EU Delegation to Georgia.
Mariam Gavtadze, Council of Europe consultant, will present the report, prepared with the contribution of state institutions, civil society and media.
Ekaterine Skhiladze, Deputy Public Defender Office of Georgia, will illustrate how hate speech affects human rights in Georgia.
Representatives of the Human Rights Secretariat, Ministry of Education, Public Defender Office, Georgian Democracy Initiative, Media Development Foundation andCharter of Journalistic Ethics will then focus on how to best co-ordinate efforts to respond to the threats posed by hate speech.
The systemic mapping was prepared under the project “Strengthening access to justice through non-judicial redress mechanisms for victims of discrimination, hate crime and hate speech in Eastern Partnership countries,” funded by the European Union and the Council of Europe and implemented by the Council of Europe in their Partnership for Good Governance II.
Media representatives can follow the event online – the link will be sent upon registration here.
The online event will start at 2 p.m. (GMT+4 – Tbilisi time)/ 11 a.m. (CET – Strasbourg time) on 22 November 2021.
The Report on the systemic mapping of national responses to hate speech in Georgia analyses the impact of hate speech on members of the society; the redresses, policies, tools and actions available to victims; the role played by different state and private actors in addressing hate speech and the outstanding challenges. It gathered contributions from various stakeholders, including representatives of civil society, media, ministries, judiciary, public defender office and parliament and it aims at identifying and prioritizing elements for future action to combat hate speech in Georgia through a comprehensive approach, as outlined in ECRI GPR 15.
The meeting and panel discussion will aim at addressing the following questions:
– Which recommendations from the mapping report can be considered as most urgent and prioritized?
– What would be the first steps to be made to address the challenges identified in the report?
– What type of follow-up action and/or support would be needed to elaborate and implement an effective strategy to address hate speech in Georgia?