The Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia

The Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia oversees the observance of human rights and freedoms in Georgia. It advises the government on human rights issues. It also analyses the state’s laws, policies and practices, in compliance with the international standards, and provides relevant recommendations.

The Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia

The Public Defender exercises the functions of the National Preventive Mechanism (NPM), envisaged by the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT). Based on the Law on “Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination”, the Public Defender is designated as an equality body, whose one of the main functions is to supervise the implementation of the law.

In 2014 the Public Defender of Georgia was named as the structure for ensuring implementation, promotion and protection of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The monitoring mechanism of the Public Defender, together with the Department of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, includes the Consultative Council for Monitoring of Promotion, Protection and Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and a monitoring group.

The Public Defender undertakes educational activities in the field of human rights and freedoms, and lodges complaints in the Constitutional Court of Georgia in case the human rights and freedoms (as envisaged in the chapter II of the Georgian Constitution) are violated by a normative act.

The Public Defender is further authorized to exercise the Amicus Curiae function at the Common Courts and the Constitutional Court of Georgia.

The powers and functions of the Public Defender are defined in the 1996 Organic Law on the Public Defender of Georgia.

The Public Defender exercises its functions independently and is bound only by the Constitution, international treaties and agreements of Georgia, and by the universally recognized principles and rules of international law, the Organic Law on Public Defender of Georgia, and other legislative acts. Any influences or interferences with the Public Defender’s activities are prohibited and punished by law.

The strategic objectives of the Office of the Public Defender (Ombudsman) of Georgia are:

  • To advise on and effectively monitor the human rights situation and assist Georgian authorities in complying with the human rights commitments;
  • To deliver educational activities on human rights of the highest professional and academic quality and enhance Ombudsman’s role as a primary institution in human rights teaching and research.
  • Ombuds
  • Equality Body
  • National Preventive Mechanism under OPCAT Art. 3 (NPM)
  • Monitoring body under CRPD Art 33(2)
Core functions
  • Monitoring
  • Publishing research, recommendations, opinions
  • Reporting to international and regional human rights mechanisms
  • Complaints handling
  • Advising government, parliament and other public bodies
  • Supporting the work of human rights defenders
  • Cooperation with civil society organisations
  • Human rights education and training
  • Awareness raising activities
  • Amicus Curiae