The Ministry of Internal Affairs is in favor of obtaining the right to “temporary isolation” of children from their parents in cases where the child is in danger. In connection with what such a need has arisen and what will its implementation result in, will there not be abuses on the part of the police, the public’s trust in which leaves much to be desired? “MK” tried to understand this difficult issue.
Stanislav KOLESNIK, head of the Department for Ensuring Public Order and Coordination of Interaction with the Executive Authorities of the subjects of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, told MK:
– This problem is very urgent: the number of crimes against minors is increasing. Over the past four years, their number has increased by 90%. But when it comes to removing a child from the family, the Family Code gives such powers at the moment only to the guardianship authorities, which, of course, do not work around the clock. They are not on duty, as in law enforcement agencies. And when police officers receive a message about the dangerous situation of a child, they are forced to act independently.
We have the authority to pick up children who are in a state of neglect. We confiscate them, place them in social or medical institutions, and then they are dealt with by the guardianship authorities. But it happens in different ways. Let’s say we come to an apartment with drunk parents. The child is in danger. What to do in such a situation when guardianship has a day off? We, of course, take measures to protect him, but it turns out that the police officers are exceeding their powers …
We are not saying that we need to be empowered with unconditional powers in the matter of removing a child from a family, as some media outlets broadcast. It is necessary to work out a mechanism, an algorithm for the actions of all subjects who are involved in this process when the child is in danger.
– But there can be abuses by the police?
– We have been doing this work for many years. And excesses can be everywhere: both in excessive measures in responding to a situation, and in non-response. The human factor always exists. But the time has come to settle this issue.
– Are there people in the police specially trained to communicate with children?
– Of course, there are juvenile affairs units for this. Trained employees work there, many of them with pedagogical education.
Member of the Council under the Government of the Russian Federation on issues of guardianship in the social sphere, President of the Volunteers to Help Orphans Charity Fund Elena ALSHANSKAYA for its part, “MK” explained:
– Even now, in 90% of cases of actual selection of children from families, this is done by the police, and only in 10% it is done by guardianship. Indeed, at this time, the police are forced to act at the junction of the law: law enforcement agencies are forced to “pull by the ears” Article 120 of the Federal Law – when children can be taken away if they are left “without supervision,” although in fact the child has parents. Now only the guardianship authorities are empowered to take children away. Having seized the child, they must, within seven days, submit documents to the prosecutor’s office with a claim for deprivation or restriction of parental rights. But, firstly, it is difficult to collect such a package of documents in seven days, and secondly, it completely closes the child’s path back to the family. The law does not provide for a third option: that you can not deprive anyone of their rights, not limit their rights, but for example, return the child back, work with the family. After all, it is not known whether this is a one-time situation or a permanent one.
– Do you think there can be abuses on the part of the police if you give them the powers in question?
– A big minus of police visits is that they are used to seeing danger where it might not actually be. The police, I suspect, are now making child removal decisions more often than social services. You need to find an adequate option. To avoid these excessive selections. I would suggest not giving these powers to the police if there is no corpus delicti. Nevertheless, I am inclined to change the system of guardianship bodies. It is necessary to strengthen personnel, to make guardianship working around the clock, or at least to bring on duty. And then we can tell the police: these are not your stories.
Another important point: we must have places where we could move not only the child who is in danger, but also other family members. We do not have such temporary places. Therefore, it is necessary to change and build this entire system. And also such a moment: it is necessary to provide for the possibility so that the child can be quickly and painlessly transferred to relatives or acquaintances of adults immediately, without registration of guardianship or having issued it in an hour. And it is not necessary to take him either to this unfortunate hospital, where he will be alone in the ward, or to the shelter.