For the Election Observation Mission to the General Election in Bosnia and Herzegovina Agora Election Observation for the first time in its history will have a Focal Point against Sexual Harassment and Mobbing.

It has always been the aim of Agora Election Observation Mission to guarantee a safe environment for all participants in which harassment and mobbing has no space. In the last months the team members of Agora Election Observation elaborated a Policy against Sexual Harassment and Mobbing inspired by the Sexual Harassment Policy of the International Labour Organization. The policy has been adapted to the formate of Election Observation Missions and was enlarged to also include mobbing.

Besides that Agora Election Observation sought out to find a person to take the position as Focal Point against Sexual Harassment and Mobbing. It was our aim to find somebody from outside of the organization to guarantee the highest level of independence. Today we are pleased to introduce to the new Focal Point:

Maria Bayer

My name is Maria and I am half-Moroccan, half-German and I’m currently based in the United Kingdom. I hold a Master’s degree in Peace and Conflict Studies from Uppsala University. It is during my studies that I developed a keen interest in good governance and inclusive political processes as tools for preventing conflict and sustaining peace. In my past work and voluntary experiences I specialised in inclusive peace processes, in particular looking at the barriers and entry points for women and youth. In this work, I have also focused on politically motivated repression and sexual and gender-based violence. 

I am currently a Junior Trainer at Youth Peace Ambassadors Network, where I am focusing on inclusive peacebuilding and mental wellbeing for youth activists. My objectives are to continue to work towards inclusive political processes that take diversity, intersectionality, and accessibility into account.

Complaint mechanism

Maria Bayer is not part of Agora Election Observation. She is independent from the organisation and will treat each complaint confidentially. She can assist in mediation amongst members of the EOM and propose someone to help with interpretation in case the Local authorities have to be informed or, if the complainant agrees, inform the Board of Agora Election Observation. She can take complaints until two weeks after the return of the observers from Sarajevo (18 October 2022). After each mission she prepares an anonymous report stating whether there have been any cases reported and the overall number of cases.

Agora Election Observation would hereby like to thank Youth Peace Ambassadors Network for the collaboration!

Post Author: AEGEE Election Observation