Committee Sittings outside of the National Assembly Seat
Tuesday, 21 February 2017
10th Sitting of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction
At the sitting held on 20 February, the members of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction reviewed the status of persons with disabilities with as special focus on NGOs and the social services they provide.
20 February 2017 10th Sitting of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction
He said that, every year, the city issues public calls concerning social/humanitarian work and added that in 2016 one third of the funds allocated for public calls went to PWD associations. Ilija Djukanovic said that the city is ready to support all projects to improve the living conditions of persons with disabilities and would support them fully, within its scope.
Dr Vesna Rakonjac, Chairperson of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction, added that the Committee had set up a Working Group for Political Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities comprising 11 MPs from different parliamentary groups, with the objective to, among other things, learn about the PWD situation in the field by visiting local self-governments, and to ascertain the problems troubling persons with disabilities.
Vladimir Pesic, Assistant Minister of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs, said that the Ministry is very engaged on PWD issues, adding that the Government had set up a Council for Persons with Disabilities as an expert advisory body, made up of representatives of the competent authorities, civil society and NGOs.
The Council for Persons with Disabilities, as an expert advisory body, is crucial for issues concerning the social and economic status of persons with disabilities, launching initiatives for coordination with relevant state authorities regarding legislation, implementation of laws and other regulations concerning the protection of persons with disabilities, and fostering cooperation with governmental and non-governmental international organisations involved in the protection of persons with disabilities, said the Assistant Minister. He also informed the attending that gerontology centres in Vojvodina have set up a 24-hour ambulance services at the disposal of the general public.
Then the representatives of PWD associations went on to list the problems they are faced with such as the ongoing revision of outside care and assistance which has resulted in parents and children not having received any payments for over a year. The representatives of PWD associations believe that persons with permanent diagnoses such as autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy should not be revised i.e. these diagnoses do not need to be re-ascertained. They also pointed out the need to recruit more personal assistants, home assistants, as well as family counsellors so as to best assist persons with disabilities.
The representatives of PWD associations were pleased that the Law on Professional Rehabilitation and Employment of Persons with Disabilities was passed in 2013 to regulate stimulations for the equal representation of persons with disabilities on the job market, as well as obligations by the employer to employ persons with disabilities.
The Assistant Minister, Committee Chairperson and the City Council member listened to the problems concerning the status of persons with disabilities and said that they would do all in their power to provide them with better standards of living.
On the second day in Subotica, 21 February, before the continuation of the 10th Sitting of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction, the Committee members visited the healthcare centre under construction, Home for Children with Developmental Disabilities “Kolevka” and the migrant reception centre.
In the continuation of the sitting the Committee members discussed the migrant crisis and its impact on the social welfare system in Subotica, one of the areas affected by it.
Nenad Ivanisevic, State Secretary at the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs, briefed the Committee members on the state-of-play of the migrant crisis, saying that Serbia has around seven thousand economic migrants housed in about 15 reception centres. He said that Subotica felt the migrant crisis in 2011 which culminated in 2015. He said that a couple of months ago a working group was set up comprising all the relevant institutions to pass new rules concerning migrant movements that allow to ascertain their movements and final destination. Most importantly, all the aid funds come from donations and not the budget of the Republic of Serbia i.e. not at the burden of the Serbian citizens. He informed the attending about the agreement on 7.3 million EUR of non-refundable assistance signed with a delegation of the European Union, as well as the 6 million EUR of assistance received from the German Government. The EU’s aid intended for infrastructure in local self-governments and health care is also of great importance for the Republic of Serbia.
Ivan Gerginov, Assistant Commissioner for Refugees and Migration, said that Serbia has handled the migrant crisis admirably, accepting almost a million refugees and displaced persons. He thanked the Ministry of Labour, Employment, Veteran and Social Affairs, Red Cross, representatives of local self-governments and non-governmental sector for their cooperation.
Milimir Vujadinovic, head of the Working Group monitoring migration on the territory of the City of Subotica, also took part in the discussion, briefing the Committee members on the current situation in Subotica and reminding them that the Serbian Government had in 2014 set up a system that the local self-governments are beginning to employ to better tackle the migrant crisis. He also said that the Working Group monitoring migration on the territory of the City of Subotica has become an operative body working in the field and coordinating migrant-related efforts with all the relevant institutions.
The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairperson Dr Vesna Rakonjac, and attended by the following Committee members and deputy members: Milanka Jevtovic Vukojicic, Radovan Jancic, Prim. Dr Branimir Rancic, Prim. Dr Vlado Babic, Bojan Torbica, Dragan Savkic, Desanka Repac, Vesna Nikolic Vukajlovic, Tomislav Zigmanov, Dr Predrag Jelenkovic, Milena Corilic, Marija Janjusevic and Enis Imamovic.
In addition to the Committee members and deputy members the sitting was also attended by MP Milimir Vujadinovic.
The sitting continues on Tuesday, 21 February at 1 pm, with the second item on the agenda: the migrant crisis and its impact on the social welfare system in Subotica, one of the areas affected by it.
The Committee held the sitting outside of the National Assembly seat via project “Strengthening the Oversight Role and Transparency of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, Phase II”, conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, with the financial support of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).
Subotica: Photo gallery
Other sessions of this committee
|Saturday, 25 November 2017||16th Sitting of the Committee on Labour, Social Issues, Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction||Krusevac||Contains photos|
|Monday, 18 October 2010||Twenty-Third Sitting of the Poverty Reduction Committee||Ada|
|Tuesday, 27 October 2009||Seventeenth Sitting of the Committee on Labour, Ex-Servicemen’s and Social Issues||Novi Sad|
|Thursday, 4 December 2008||Third Sitting of the Poverty Reduction Committee||Leskovac|
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Committee meetings outside the headquarters of the National Assembly are being organized and this sub-site has been produced with the support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), as part of the project "Strengthening the oversight role and publicity in the work of the National Assembly." The views and content on this subpage do not necessarily represent the views of UNDP and the SDC.