Families and Children in Moldova will be protected by a new Strategy
ORHEI, Moldova, 17 April 2012 - The Prime Minister of Moldova, the Ministry of Labour, Social Protection and Family and UNICEF launched the public consultation process for a new Child and Family Protection Strategy in Orhei today.
The Strategy will ensure the continuation of the residential child care system reform for 2007-2011, which has made significant progress for children. There are twice fewer children in care today than they were at the beginning of the reform. All children were assisted to return in their biological families or were placed in alternative family-type services: foster care, family-type homes, and small-group homes.
However progress went slower for children with disabilities and young children under three years. Today in Moldova there are around 200 young children living in institutions, although their finding here can be dramatic: a general rule says that for every three months spent in an institution, a child loses a month in development.
Moldova's Prime Minister, Mr. Vlad Filat, expressed today in Orhei the Government's commitment to gradually stop placing young children in institutions, as part of the new Child and Family Protection Strategy. Thus the Moldovan Government responded to the Call launched in 2011 by UNICEF and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to the countries of Central and Eastern Europe to stop placing young children under 3 in institutions.
“This should be one of the medium-term targets for the future Child and Family Protection Strategy," said Prime Minister, stressing that the new document must be closely linked to the public budget, so that the scarce state resources are invested rationally, with concrete targets and results”.
"Moldova is the first country in the region who took such a clear political commitment. We appreciate the Government's initiative to accept this challenge", said Alexandra YUSTER, UNICEF Representative in Moldova.
Valentina BULIGA, Minister of Labour, Social Protection and Family said the new Child and Family Protection Strategy in Moldova will aim also to combat domestic violence, abuse against women, child labor and sexual exploitation, to create quality community services and increase welfare by promoting and supporting family values, unity and strength.
"Today the system of child and family protection in Moldova is crossing a stage that probably will not repeat - a stage full of opportunities, which also requires a tremendous responsibility," said the Minister.
The Strategy will consult parents, children, professionals and all interested citizens. The process will be coordinated by the Ministry of Labour and Social Protection under the auspices of the National Council for Child Protection and supported by the Prime Minister. UNICEF will provide international expertise and coordinate the support provided by UN agencies and NGOs in Moldova.
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