Posted: October 13, 2004
Warsaw, Poland ... ADL addressed members of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) on useful models to combat anti-Semitism, and all forms of hate and bias-motivated crime at its annual Human Dimension Implementation Meeting in Warsaw, Poland.
"Placement of hate crime on the international agenda is recognition that these crimes have a special call on the conscience of humanity and require special treatment under the law," said Fred Lawrence, ADL National Legal Affairs Chair and member of the official U.S. delegation to the OSCE conference in Warsaw.
Prof. Lawrence, a renowned hate crime law expert and a professor at Boston University, led a panel which included Austria's Interior Minister, Ernst Strasser. Minister Strasser presented ADL's anti-bias training program for law enforcement - which is currently being implemented in Austria -- as a best practice other nations could adopt.
Strasser praised the League's professionalism and experience and welcomed the partnership with ADL as a valuable contribution to Austria's police and to its society at large.
At a side event, ADL's program coordinator in Austria, Barbara Sahab, and her partner in Austria's law enforcement training academy presented the details of the anti-bias program and its adaptability in different environments.
Prof. Lawrence had an opportunity to speak on the subject of using public private partnerships in the fight against anti-Semitism and intolerance and to help advance U.S. efforts to mobilize the OSCE to combat anti-Semitism and intolerance.
In addressing a session on hate on the Internet, he discussed the value of combating hate with education while preserving free speech rights. "There is no more effective hate filter than the educated mind of a child who has the skills and understanding to recognize and reject bigotry."
The Warsaw conference, Europe's largest human rights gathering, reviewed the recommendations of the OSCE Berlin anti-Semitism conference as well as the OSCE Paris meeting on Internet hate and the OSCE Brussels meeting on racism and xenophobia.