In 2016 Media Law Institute founded on February 1, 2005, transformed into Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law. Being in existence for 11 years, we managed to reach a number of achievements that we are proud of in different spheres of our activity.
Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law acted as co-author of such Law in force:
- Law of Ukraine “On Public Service Television and Radio Broadcasting of Ukraine” (2014) and Law of Ukraine on amending to the Law on Public Service Broadcasting (2015);
- The Law of Ukraine “On Access to Public Information” (2011)
- New version of the Law of Ukraine “On Information” (with amendments as of 2011)
- The Law of Ukraine “On Amending of Certain Legislative Acts of Ukraine on Improving Certain Provisions on Limiting Places for Smoking” (2012), known also as the Law on smoking in public places ban
- The Law of Ukraine “On introduction of changes into certain legislative acts of Ukraine on prohibition of adverting, sponsorship and sales promotion of tobacco products” (2012), known also as “the Law on cigarettes advertisement ban”.
Currently, we are working on amendments to electoral legislation in the part, connected with media issues; the Draft of Law on Reforming the State and Municipal Print Media as well as development of other media drafts and amendments: on regulation online mass media, press, state authorities’ transparency, advertisement, Internet etc.
STATE AUTHORITIES TRANSPARENCY
From the beginning of its foundation, our organization stood on free access to information that is disposed by state authorities. Years of persistent work resulted into adoption of the Law of Ukraine “On Access to Public Information”, co-authors of which were CEDEM’s lawyers, in 2011. After this, Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law started to work actively on implementation of the Law and provision of real access to the state information because of strategic court proceedings, advocates, judges, journalists and activists education, consultation ect.
In 2014, common citizens finally can get on the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine sessions thanks to the CEDEM’s efforts. After laws amendments were adopted and allowed citizens to visit Parliament’s sessions, Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law wrote petitions and had legal proceedings with Alexander Turchynov. As a result, he approved respectful Order and now common citizens can visit Rada’s sessions only with the help of online application.
SYSTEM CHANGES THROUGH JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS
Of course, judicial proceedings are very important. Thanks to them the journalists and activists get protection of their rights from their state’s violation free of charge. But, strategic judicial cases are even more important, because such cases that depend on the system itself and can lead to changes in the state.
It is possible to grant principal access to the information that is unlawfully hidden by the State, including financial, thanks to the strategic judicial cases. Thus, Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law managed to achieve publishing of almost all MPs’ declarations on the Verkhovana Rada’s web site through long lasting judicial proceedings. MPs and Government officials are obliged to publish their own declarations according to the Law of Ukraine “On Access to Public Information” and “On fundamentals of prevention and reaction on corruption” though they did not do it.
Due to the sue against Alexander Turchynov Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law managed to influence on Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and to open access to the Parliaments sessions to common citizens.
Centre for Democracy and Rule of Law has held twelve summer media law schools since 2005, nine of which were international.
Overall, 282 lawyers from 11 countries became alumni of the school: from Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Belarus, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Poland. Many of them became prominent experts of the sphere in their countries and conduct positive influence on their communities and societies.