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Order for protection

Legislation should establish a civil order for protection remedy for women and girls at risk of an “honour” crime or killing. Laws should provide for both an emergency, ex parte order for protection remedy as well as a longer-term order for protection issued following a formal hearing.

Standing to apply for order for protection

  • Legislation should provide that any reputable person, such as a family member, teacher, neighbor, or counselor, having knowledge of a child who appears to be in need of protection, and having reason to fear imminent bodily harm for the child from the perpetration of an “honour” crime or killing, may petition the court for an order for protection from the crime or killing.
  • Legislation should provide that a girl or woman over the age of 10 who has reason to fear her own imminent bodily harm from the perpetration of an “honour” crime or killing also has standing to apply for an order for protection. 

Evidence needed to obtain order for protection

Legislation should state that the testimony of those with standing to apply for an order for protection from “honour” crimes and killings, in court or by sworn affidavit, is sufficient evidence on its own for the issuance of the order for protection.  No further evidence should be necessary.

Petition for emergency order for protection

  • Legislation should provide for an emergency order for protection remedy for a female in need of protection from an “honour” crime or killing. A woman or girl at risk of an “honour” crime should be able to seek an emergency order for protection on an expedited basis, and judges should be available to issue such orders 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Legislation should empower judges to issue such emergency orders on an ex parte basis without a hearing. (See: Domestic Violence Section)
  • Legislation should provide that the petition for an emergency order for protection shall allege the existence of or immediate and present danger of an “honour” crime or killings.
  • Legislation should provide that the court has jurisdiction over the parties to a matter involving “honour” crimes and killings, notwithstanding that there is a parent in the child's household who is willing to enforce the court's order and accept services on behalf of the family. This ensures continued protection in cases where parents may be divided over the issue of the “honour” crime or killing.   
  • Legislation should state that there is no waiting period necessary for the emergency protection order to take effect.

An order for protection should include:

  • Injunction against “honour”-based violence;   
  • Suspension of parental authority if the court determines that a parent or parents are considering authorizing the “honour” crime or killing of a minor child or that the child or a responsible adult has a reasonable fear that the parents are considering authorizing the “honour” crime or killing;

Legislation should also provide that an order for protection may, if appropriate: (1) prohibit the perpetrator from contacting the complainant, (2) require the perpetrator to stay away from the complainant (and other people, if appropriate) and the places that she frequents, (3) require the perpetrator to vacate the family home, (4) prohibit the perpetrator from purchasing, using, or possessing a firearm or other weapon specified by the court (such as acid or other weapons frequently used in “honour” crimes), and/or (5) require the perpetrator to provide financial assistance to the complainant.

Legislation should also make clear that an order for protection remedy is available regardless of whether criminal charges are filed and irrespective of the complainant’s participation in any criminal proceedings against the perpetrator.

Copy of order for protection to law enforcement agency

An emergency order for protection shall be forwarded by the court administrator within 24 hours to the local law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the residence of the complainant.

Each appropriate law enforcement agency shall make available to other law enforcement officers through a system of verification, information as to the existence and status of any order for protection issued. Each appropriate law enforcement agency shall make available to other law enforcement officers, through a system of verification, information as to the existence and status of any order for protection issued. Legislation should provide for the establishment of a nationwide registration system for orders for protection so that police can efficiently determine whether such an order is in place.

Parental intervention and education programme

Legislation should provide that the parent, parents, or guardian of a child in a shelter, refuge or foster care home shall attend an intervention and education program on the issue of “honour” crimes and killings and women’s human rights. Legislation should require that the intervention and education program be established by NGOs with experience in this field. Legislation should require that the state fund the intervention and education program.

Review of status of child in shelter, refuge or foster care home

  • When an emergency order for protection is in effect with respect to a child and the child is residing in a shelter, refuge, or foster care home, the court shall periodically review the status of the child and of the parent or guardian regarding the issue of “honour” crimes and killings. (See the section on Hearing by Court).
  • If the court finds that it is in the best interest of the child, the court may order that the child may return home to her parents. 
  • Legislation shall provide that all other terms of the order for protection, including the injunction against travel and the injunction against “honour”-based violence, shall remain in place until the court finds that it is in the best interest of the child for each injunction to be lifted.
  • Legislation should require follow-up monitoring of the child who returns to her parents to ensure that an “honour” crime or killing does not take place later. 
  • Legislation should provide that if the court finds that it is in the best interest of the child to remain in the shelter, refuge or foster care home, the court may continue the child’s placement in the facility.

Violation of order for protection

Legislation should state that violation of an order for protection is a crime and a separate criminal offense from any “honour”-based violence that may occur in connection with the violation of the order. The penalty for violation of an order for protection should be sufficiently severe to deter such violations (e.g., a fine would not be a sufficient penalty), and laws should provide enhanced penalties for multiple violations of an order for protection.

No time limit on order for protection

Legislation should state that an order for protection should be left in place permanently, or until lifted by decision of the court after a hearing, or (in cases where the order relates to a minor) until the child attains the age of majority.

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