Krasnodar, 10 July. Today we speak with Tatiana Kovaleva, Children’s Ombudsman in Krasnodar krai.
Q.: During the recent quarantine, did you receive requests from parents to extend the support measures on older children or to change the sum of payments?
A.: Of course, I did receive resorts where citizens asked to extend the payments on children of 16 to 18 years old. I would like to admit that the federal children’s ombudsman submitted such request to the Cabinet of Ministers. No final decision has been taken so far, but we are following the situation with hope.
Q.: How many requests have you received since the beginning of the year?
A.: Since the beginning of 2020, we have received 1,243 requests, including 681 written communications, 463 calls to the trust line, and 99 personal receptions. On the average, we receive over 2,500 appeals every year, of which 90% come from Kuban residents.
Q.: What did the people ask for? What issues were the most difficult?
A.: The most numerous and difficult addresses concern a child’s right to live and be educated in the family. So, appeals about family disputes and children’s upbringing have been dominating over the past two years. The list of the most widely spread topics includes protection of the housing rights of families with children; reception of qualified legal advice; protection of children’s rights for education and allowance from their parents. The issue of protection of kids against harmful information also remains very important. There have been not many of them, but each such submission concerns the unlimited range of underage citizens. And these addresses are very troubling: spread of child porn and prison romanticism in social networks, calls for extremism, promotion of drugs through graffities drawn on the walls of houses and schools, etc. The analysis of the addresses lets us conclude that many young spouses are not ready to conclude the marriage and overcome conflicts. Besides, I should note low responsibility of the parents as well as excessive intervention of other relatives in the process of upbringing.
Q.: Are the approaches to upbringing changing in new-generation parents?
A.: Presently, the families that have children, on one hand, display activity and interest to healthy lifestyle, organization of leisure for the family and children, increase of the material wellbeing of the family; on the other hand, their distinctive feature is the craze for gadgets to the detriment of normal communication with one another and with their kids. We can see it everywhere: at the playground, in the outpatient hospital, in the park, in the family, etc. A parent is sitting next to his/her kid, and both are having mobile phones in their hands. The kids who found themselves in a challenging situation with whom I spoke, quite often mentioned that they were alone, neglected by their parents, which fact nearly always was a fully unexpected thing for the parents when I set out to talk to them.
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