Report for the situation of the children’s rights in Republic of Macedonia, prepared by Macedonian National Coalition of Nongovernmental Organizations for children’s rights.
The report for the situation of the children’s rights in Republic of Macedonia, is prepared by the Macedonian National Coalition of Nongovernmental Organizations for children’s rights (informal coalition), consisted of 14 Civil Society organizations. This coalition is formed on 13.11.1997 and is coordinated by The First Children’s Embassy in the world Megjashi.
This report is a review of the situation of children in Macedonia for the period from June 2010 to December 2011. The is prepared by monitoring the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Children, the implementation of the recommendations that came from the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child in June 2010 and implementation of other international instruments which regulate the rights of children. The subject of monitoring was the actual situation of the children in this period, and also the previous alternative reports prepared by the National Coalition of NGOs and the previous alternative report prepared by the children.
After analysis of the implemented and achieved results evaluation is made about the level and quality of implementation as well as recommendations on how to overcome certain problems and what should be done to enable the realization of children's rights. This report, except that notes the taken initiatives and measures it is expected to make the relevant institutions more and accountable that will enable monitoring of the quality of implemented activities on their part.
The previous report prepared by the Macedonian national coalition, is rated by the UN Committee as suitable for monitoring the condition of children's rights by the sector of civil society. Therefore in this report, the collected data is processed and presented in accordance with the structure that is recommended by this Committee so that the information is systematized by areas such as: general measures of implementation, general principles of the Convention, civil rights and freedoms, family environment and alternative care; Health and social assistance, education, leisure and cultural activities and special defensive measures.
The general picture of the situation of children shows that the efforts of all stakeholders, can be recognized, to change the main drawbacks of caring for children, but as a Coalition we believe that the majority of the recommendations that came from the Committee on the Rights of the Child to the Republic of Macedonia in June 2010, are still current and should work towards improving the overall condition.
What we have concluded that it is not implemented by the Government of the Republic of Macedonia and is recommendation of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, and in our opinion it is the fresh created situation of the children’s rights:
- Opening 24 hours shelter for children victims of sexual abuse, pedophilia and incest; - Compulsory registration of children who don’t have governed birth certificate, because otherwise the child can not hold any right
- Implementation of compulsory pre-school with the intention of eradicating poverty, illiteracy and exclusion from education with particular emphasis on providing benefits for vulnerable children
- Implementation of evidence of child victims of child labor considering that transit center, shelter and day center is not the solution to overcome this problem, but requires the involvement of children in preschool and compulsory primary education
- Amending the Law on Juvenile Justice where is provided is for children to give two, maximum three statements. We as a coalition and still believe that it is enough the children to give only one statement in particular specialized screen-room, in the presence of an expert team (psychologists, pedagogues, social workers, psychiatrists), where the child victim or witness of crime through informal atmosphere will provide information relevant to the organs of criminal prosecution and adjudication
- Harmonization of SOS helpline for children and youth 0800 12222 to the six digit European children number 116 111, providing its 24 hour availability of all fixed and mobile operators and mandatory funding from the budget of the Republic of Macedonia - SOS helpline to be recognized as a source of information and data for policies and laws on children's rights as a tool for early intervention and prevention.
Besides the general issues and recommendations included in the report it also covers many specific problems, which depends on the level of protection and realization of the rights of children. Some of those recommendations that emerged as a conclusion during the preparation of this report to better implement the Convention on the Rights of the Child into practice are:
- Codification of laws that govern the rights of children in a systematic legal act;
- Involvement of children in the work of the National Commission on the Rights of Children in Government of RM;
- Providing a specific budget allocated for children;
- Education of children and young people to recognize forms of discrimination and ways to prevent unequal treatment;
- Legal and psychosocial assistance and support for child victims of mental, physical and sexual abuse, exploitation and violence;
- The principle of best interest of the child, should be an integral and leading part of all policies and decisions relating to children;
- Competent authorities should take seriously the opinion of the child when making decisions on its importance;
- it is necessary to engage the social workers in schools in coordination with other professional team that will identify specific changes in student behaviour and intervene in their own families;
- Employment of special education teachers in all schools;
- Signing and ratifying the Third optional protocol by the state
Next step is to familiarize the public, state, as well as many children and youth with the contents of this report and process monitoring, because it is also one of the recommendations of the Committee. Following conferences, debates, round tables in order to present the results of the conducted monitoring and to find common solutions to the identified deficiencies and overcoming the problems. Experiences and knowledge obtained during this process will be transferred and used to improve the situation of children's rights in Macedonia through lobbying and advocacy for creating policies that will be incorporated in the existing legal framework.
In order to have a more complete picture of the respect and rights of children in Macedonia, the National Coalition, starting this year, prepare annual reports that will be the basis for the next periodical alternative report.
The work of the Coalition is supported by UNICEF in Macedonia through the project "Capacity Building of NGOs in monitoring children's rights."
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