UNICEF Representative and Montenegrin Prime Minister commit to ensuring full inclusion of children with disability
PODGORICA, MARCH 8, 2013 – Prime Minister of Montenegro Milo Djukanovic and UNICEF Montenegro Representative Benjamin Perks met today to discuss the situation on children in Montenegro, as well as the continuation of the cooperation between the Government of Montenegro and UNICEF in the process of Montenegro’s accession to the European Union.
During the meeting, they both agreed that so far achievements make an excellent platform to continue investing further efforts that are necessary to ensure full inclusion of children with disability in Montenegro. Most importantly, they committed to work together to achieve this goal.
The Prime Minister underlined the continuous commitment of the state to fully implement the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
They agreed that the impact of the nationwide campaign “It’s About Ability” has been essential to overcoming prejudices and encouraging full inclusion of children with disabilities. At the same time, the number of children with disabilities in schools has increased significantly.
Recently, at the UN, the delegates from the Montenegrin Government presented the campaign’s achievements and the progress made so far in advancing the realization of the right of children with disability to quality education.
“We are proud that Montenegro was chosen to share experience on the inclusion of children with disabilities to the United Nations,” said UNICEF Montenegro Representative Benjamin Perks.
The role of UNICEF in Montenegro is to support the efforts of the Government in the process of reforming society on the path to the European integration, said Mr. Perks noting that so far, achievements positioned Montenegro as the potential leader, not only in the region, but also at the global level.
They also exchanged views on the social and child welfare system reform, and praised achievements of the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare to implement such a policy. In particular, it was pointed out that the process of foster care should be further strengthened, with an emphasis on children under 3 years of age.
UNICEF Representative concluded that UNICEF will continue to work with the Government of Montenegro and support the implementation of activities aimed at preventing separation of children from their families, placement of children in institutions, and creating necessary preconditions to provide quality education to all children.