Unequal position of children in the centers

Different attitude of the state towards institutions founded by local self-governments, compared to those founded by the state

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Home "Mladost" in Bijela, Photo: Shutterstock
Home "Mladost" in Bijela, Photo: Shutterstock
Disclaimer: The translations are mostly done through AI translator and might not be 100% accurate.

The institution of the Protector of Human Rights and Freedoms recommended the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare (MRSS) to take measures aimed at harmonizing the financing of daycare services for children with developmental disabilities, in order to enable their smooth functioning.

In April, the founders of the institution visited two day centers in Herceg Novi - the Sutorina Day Center for children with disabilities and developmental difficulties and the Children's Home "Mladost" Bijela, one founded by the local self-government and the other founded by the state.

Uneven financing of the services provided by these institutions, as well as the problems they face as a result, was noted, which could put into question the exercise of user rights. They were also informed that the participation of parents and guardians in these two institutions is uneven, and they were immediately convinced that the participation of parents and guardians is charged by the "Mladost" Children's Home.

Referrals of users to these two centers are made by the Center for Social Work there.

In a decision from August 2021, the Ministry determined the price of the day care service provided by the Children's Home "Mladost" at 2,19 euros per hour. In December of the same year, the municipality adopted a regulation for the Sutorina Day Care Center, where 7,27 euros per user is charged per hour.

"The solutions differ in relation to the institution to which the child is referred, that the users of the Children's Home 'Mladost' participate in the price of the service, and that the competent ministry participates at 150 euros per user, while the solutions do not specify the Day Center in Sutorina participation of users, and from the beginning of 2022, that center does not receive participation from the state", it is stated in the established facts.

They state that the state, in accordance with the provisions of the Law on Social and Child Protection, which will apply from October 1 this year, will co-finance the operating costs of day care centers for children and youth with developmental disabilities in each municipality.

"Representatives of the Protector visited a large number of day care centers, with whose managers they are in frequent oral communication, and they noticed different approaches to financing and different attitudes of the state towards them. Therefore, one notices the different treatment and functioning of day care centers, that is, the different attitude of the state towards those founded by local self-governments, in relation to those founded by the state. Unequal treatment puts service users in an unequal position and they receive unequal treatment. Namely, the beneficiaries of the state-financed institution are in a more favorable position," states the opinion signed by Snežana Mijušković.

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