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Lecturer Iñaki Rivera receives APDHE Human Rights Prize

Iñaki Rivera.

Iñaki Rivera.



Iñaki Rivera, lecturer from the Department of Criminal Law and Criminal Science, and Public International Law and International Relations of the Faculty of Law, has been awarded in the national category of the APDHE 2020 Human Right Prizes, organized by Pro Human Rights Association of Spain (APDHE). His candidature obtained 66% of the votes (40,600), over the other two, Plataforma de Residencias with 29% (18,300) and the jurist Carlos Jiménez Villarejo with 3% (2,200).

This award, given by popular vote, highlights Rivera’s task in the fight for human rights. An important part of this activity has been linked to initiatives and workspaces Rivera promoted and contributed to promote: the Observatory of the Penal System and Human Rights of the UB, the magazine Crítica Penal y Poder (UB) and the System for Documentation and Communication of Institutional Violence (SIRECOVI).

The Spanish Association Pro Human Rights (APDHE) held its first edition of these awards in 1982. Given in three categories (national, international and journalism), it honors people, organizations and institutions that carry out actions and work in favour of human rights from the most absolute integrity and generosity.

Rivera, disciple from the recently disappeared Roberto Bergalli, was a pioneer in this institution when it comes to the fight for people’s human rights. He has reported abuses that inmates may suffer and has been involved in the defence of the political prisoners of the Catalan independence movement, both of which have often brought problems and inconveniences of several kinds. A pioneer in the creation of what was the first shift for the assistance to prisoners in the Barcelona Bar, Rivera is a role model in penitentiary issues, not only in Spain but also in several European and Latin American countres.

Founder of the Observatory on the Penal System and Human Rights (OSPDH) at the University of Barcelona in 2001, in 2016, with a team made up of professors, postgraduate and doctoral students and volunteers, he created the "Registration System and communication of institutional violence "(SIRECOVI), a system that is activated as a warning when it receives reports from people who have suffered institutional violence. Its aim is to obtain measures to protect victims and to support their families. In 2018, he was appointed member of the European Committee’s Observatory of National Preventive Mechanisms against Torture. This year, he has been selected to be part of the Advisory Council of the Human Rights Structure of Catalonia, in order to implement the nee Human Rights Plan.

Iñaki Rivera (1958) is a lecturer of Criminal Law at the University of Barcelona, director of the Observatory on the Penal System and Human Rights (University Research Center recognized as Consolidated by the Catalan Government), scientific director of the official Master's in Criminology; Criminal Policy and Sociology of Criminal Law and the doctorate studies in Law and Political Science of the UB. Visiting professor in many European and Latin American universities, he has supervised more than eighty doctoral and master's theses, and has been a principal investigator in fifty-six funded research projects funded by Catalan, Spanish and European Union public bodies. He is the author of more than 200 publications on topics related to Criminology, Criminal Policy, Penology, Criminal Legal Sociology and Human Rights.

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