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Monday 25.06.2018 | Name days: Maiga, Milija
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Politicians: child protection should consist of work with victims, not paper

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU«The person is what matters – not just his or her profession, but also the level of interest and ability to help children in certain situations. We can write laws, instructions and algorithms, but nothing will work if social workers, orphan courts, police officers and doctors focus on work with paper, not children. Of course, it requires more resources and practical work, but it is the only way,» notes chairperson of Social and Employment Matters Committee Aija Barca.

Although laws and rules guarantee a child’s safety on paper, services responsible for work with risk families often face serious problems, which sometimes result in the death of the child. Work with children should be carried from offices to the real environment – families, schools and streets, Saeima deputies noted when analysing problems associated with cooperation among child protection institutions, BNN was informed by the Saeima press-service.

«It is shocking that doctors, social workers and other specialists tasked with working with risk families on a daily basis often face aggression in those families as a result of which they become afraid of visiting families. It is a dead end. Ministries should seriously work on raising capacity of related services and this work efficiency,» says Human Rights and Public Affairs Committee manager Inese Laizane.

Saeima’s press-service notes that services have proposed establishing inter-institutional cooperation by developing new Cabinet of Ministers requirements. They would include detailed cooperation procedures and terms that would state the range of specialists that would have to be represented in work groups to resolve problematic situations.

At the same time, Laizane emphasizes that officials should not waste time on inventing a bicycle. «It is important to look at established practices and use the tools that are already available to services. For example, the country has a system that compiles information on minors that require assistance. It helps find out the problem that person faces. However, according to deputies, services with access to this system often do not input other important information for other services,» she says.

Multiple deputies said officials have been talking about improving inter-institutional cooperation for years, but there have not been any improvements so far. Violence in many families remains a reality with no way out for the victims.

Deputies agreed to review those matters in more detail at separate meetings of the Social and Employment Matters Committee and Human Rights and Public Affairs Committee.

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