What is the mission of the Bahia Public Defender's office?
The mission of the Bahia Public Defender's office is to promote legal assistance for poor people and human rights violations. The institution was created in 1985 with the purpose of providing legal assistance for those who cannot afford it, particularly for those who have been victims of human rights violations. However, over the years, the Bahia Public Defender's office has expanded its services to provide all kinds of legal assistance, with a strong focus on protecting human rights. This includes providing legal assistance for poor people, human rights violations, and marginalized groups such as women, children, and minorities.
What is the Maria da Penha's Law and how does it relate to the work of the Bahia Public Defender's office?
The Maria da Penha's Law is a legal standard in Brazil that was created to repress and prevent violations against women in the familiar and domestic space. This law criminalizes domestic violence, including physical, psychological, sexual, and patrimonial violence, and establishes measures to protect women who are victims of violence. The Bahia Public Defender's office has been working with this law since 2008 by creating the Legal Assistance Department of Women's Defense. We use this law to provide preventative measures such as popular legal education for vulnerable groups and repression measures such as fighting for women's rights in court and providing protection measures to reduce the risk of death for victims of domestic violence.
What are the different ways the Bahia Public Defender's office provides legal assistance to women?
The Bahia Public Defender's office provides legal assistance to women in three main ways. The first way is through prevention, where we work with popular legal education for vulnerable groups, both adults and children. We also work to provide spaces in labour qualification services to help women become economically independent from their aggressors. The second way is through repression, where we fight for women's rights in court and provide protection measures to reduce the risk of death for victims of domestic violence. The third way is through institutional measures, where we created a policy in public defense to guarantee that women public defenders in Bahia will be able to occupy positions of power. This is important for ensuring that women's perspectives and experiences are taken into account in legal proceedings and decision-making processes.
Can you provide more details about the current challenges facing the Bahia Public Defender's office in terms of expanding their services?
The current challenge facing the Bahia Public Defender's office is to expand our services to reach more cities throughout Bahia. Currently, we are only present in 56 cities, but our goal is to be present in all 203 cities to provide legal assistance and support through the network of protection in all cities of Bahia. This requires a significant amount of resources and investments, including funding and personnel, to expand their services and reach more women in need of legal assistance.
How would receiving this award benefit the Bahia Public Defender's office in achieving their goals?
The Princess Sabeeka award is very important for the Bahia Public Defender's office because it will provide us with the necessary investments and economic resources to expand our services to reach more cities throughout Bahia. The award will also serve as a stimulation for the government and other sectors to invest more in the public defender's office, allowing us to achieve our goal of providing legal assistance and support to all women in Bahia. Additionally, the recognition and acknowledgement of our work through an such an honorable award would serve as a morale boost and encouragement for the public defender's office to continue their efforts in promoting and protecting the rights of women and other marginalized groups.