The researcher Núria Torres leads the project "Impact of the Barnahus model on protecting the rights of children victims of sexual abuse in the criminal justice system"
Protecting the rights of the child and adolescent victims of sexual abuse in the criminal justice system and the awareness-raising and training of criminal justice professionals are some of the objectives of the international project led by the Territory, Citizenship and Sustainability – URV Research Group.
On 5 October at the Faculty of Legal Sciences of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV), researchers from the URV and the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), as well as Save the Children met to launch the international project entitled "Impact of the Barnahus model on protecting the rights of children victims of sexual abuse in the criminal justice system".
The OAK Foundation funds the project. It is led by researcher Núria Torres Rosell, lecturer in Criminal Law, from the Territory, Citizenship and Sustainability research group at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili. Over the next 18 months, they will work together with Save the Children, the Red Promise Barnahus and the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) with the aim of:
- mapping existing methodologies for evaluating intervention with child victims of sexual abuse
- designing an evidence-based assessment tool to analyse relevant changes in criminal proceedings in terms of prosecution, sentencing and conviction rates and the reduction of child assessments, as well as the time spent in proceedings
- testing the assessment tool in the Barnahus in Tarragona, which is the first pilot of the Barnahus model in Spain and Southern Europe
- developing awareness, capacity building and training activities for criminal justice professionals (judges, prosecutors, lawyers, police, forensic doctors and other judicial staff) on child-friendly justice and mechanisms to reduce secondary victimisation.
The Barnahus model is a Nordic benchmark for intervention with child victims of sexual abuse. From July 2020, the pilot project in Tarragona will be developed. It is planned to replicate the model in other parts of Spain. In this sense, in 2022, the GOV/157/2022 AGREEMENT of 26 July was published, approving the Barnahus strategy for the comprehensive approach to sexual abuse of children and adolescents in Catalonia (DOGC of 28.07.2022).