Non-governmental Organization "Kharkiv Institute for Social Researches " (KhISR) was established on March, 10 1999 and on Dec. 15, 2010 it was re-registered in accordance with new Law of Ukraine "About civic associations". KhISR is the non-profitable non-governmental organization. In its activity Institute is independent of any organizations’ or agencies’ influence both governmental and non-governmental.
At the current moment the structure of the Institute is consisting of a director, accountant, experts, research fellows and volunteers. For project implementation they are creating working groups which have a temporary character. In these working groups are involved highly skilled experts in sphere of sociology, law and psychology, social work, public education and health. Among them are 2 Full Doctors and 4 PhD Degrees.
Human rights protection activity is playing a special role in the Institute’s functioning. Thus, since 2003 experts of the Institute are being consequently implemented different projects, directed of democratization of law-enforcement activity and improving of public control over law-enforcement agencies. In 2003 – 2004 due to financial support of the Council of Europe Program «Police and HR Beyond 2000», experts of the institute together with the expert of the Essex University Ralph Crowshow was conducted cycle of regional seminars for militia employees, in course of which the HR issues in law-enforcement activity were discussed.
Institute, together with colleagues from Kharkiv HR Protection Group executed the project «Campaign against tortures in Ukraine», which conducted under support of the European Commission in 2000-2004. Results of the sociology survey conducted by the Institute laid in the ground of the monograph «Unlawful violence in law-enforcement agencies: sociological, historical and legal analysis - 2004».
Since 2004 Institute initiated a monitoring activity directed on the realization of an OPCAT. Established and coordinated by employees of the Institute mobile monitoring groups started to visit detention facilities of police stations and collect information about detention conditions. Since 2005 this activity obtained a national scale. In 2006 – 2014 Institute with financial support of OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine conducted 60 trainings, working meetings in course of which there was prepared a national monitor team of NGO representatives and police officials (more than 300 persons).
Institute’s activity is also directed on the created at Interior Ministry Civil Councils on HR issues. Experts of the Institute are providing methodical help to regional Councils, coordinating their activity, analyzing results of their work, providing necessary resources to Councils’ secretaries.
Institute employees are permanently involved in serious methodical work. Thus, for the last few years experts of the Institute has developed and published active training methods manual - «HR in militia activity», training manual «Investigative interviewing», practical manual «Mobile groups on HR protection monitoring in law-enforcement activity», preparing the edition of the practical manual for Civil Council members.
The most significant project activities are:
- Sustainable development of national preventive mechanisms against torture and ill-treatment in Ukraine -2010, supported by OSCE;
- Series of 7 trainings for police officer in HR standards in policing in the framework of the Joint Programme between the Council of Europe and the European Union “Combating ill-treatment and impunity” in South Caucasus, Moldova and Ukraine;
- "Alternative evaluation system of police efficiency with use of public opinion - 2010” supported by International Renaissance Foundation;
- National sociological survey “The using level of legal opportunities by the Ukrainian population: accessibility and efficiency of provided services -2010 (in the framework of the Legal Empowerment of the Poor)” supported by International Renaissance Foundation;
- National sociological survey “Unlawful violence in militia -2010” in the framework of «Campaign against tortures» supported by European Commission;
- "Eliminating Racial and Ethnic Discrimination from Ukrainian Police Investigation Documents" - 2010, supported by British Council and IOM;
- “Implementing of the experimental registration terminal of staying a person in police stations-2009” supported by International Renaissance Foundation;
- “Non-tolerant developments in Ukraine - 2008” Supported by Canadian Embassy in Ukraine.
Among the project partners of the Institute: Kharkiv HR Protection Group, International Female HR Protection Center «La Strada - Ukraine», Polish Helsinki Foundation, Kharkiv HR Protection Group, Sodruzhestvo, Odessa HR Protection Group “Veritas”, Opora.Institute activities are regulary sponsored by: Council of Europe, OSCE, International Renaissance Foundation, Danish Institute for Human Rights, British Council, USAID, National Endowment for Democracy.