Legal solutions on alternative care in Poland and how to advocate

Report
Legal solutions on alternative care in Poland
and
how to advocate for better ones
Beata Kulig
Belgrade, 17th of Dec., 2013
Legal solutions on alternative care in Poland
and how to advocate for better ones
Content:
a. Framework:
- Statistics of children in alternative care vs. the
general population;
- Structure of Polish administrative system in
charge of alternative care
b. Polish legal system of alternative care;
c. Challenges in implementation of alternative care
law;
d. Polish Foster Care Coalition as an advocate in de-I
process of alternative care in Poland.
Framework
• Number of children in Poland aged 0-19 years
old: a bit more than 8,000,000
• Number of children/young adults in
alternative care (0-25 years old): a bit more
than 78,000
0,9% children live in alternative care
Structure of Polish administrative system
in charge of alternative care
a. There are 3 administrative units in Poland 
province – district – commune
16 provinces, 380 districts and almost 2,500 communes
are run by local governments on each level elected in
popular vote, independent each other;
b. Role of central government on province level;
c. Responsabilites of local goverment regading
alternative care system
Structure of Polish administrative system
in charge of alternative care
Responsability of local government regarding
alternative care system
a. Each district chief runs a District Center for
Family Support
b. Each commune chief runs a Center for Social
Assistance
c. A province speaker is responsible for
supervision of adoption process and for
running of adoption centers
Polish legal system regarding
alternative care
• The Constitution of the Republic of Poland
safeguard child rights and family rights and
also refers to alternative care;
• Act on family support and alternative care
system of June, 9, 2011;
Act on family support
and alternative care system
Act of 2011 defines tasks of the Ministry of Labor and Social
Policy and local governments.
a. Local government is in charge of:
• Support of children and family (especially multi-problem
families); responsible - commune level;
• Development of alternative care - responsible: district level;
• Adoption - responsibility: province level.
b. Role of Polish Ministry of Labor and Social Policy:
• creation of law dedicated to social assistance system
• via provincial representatives of central government –
monitoring of quality standards in institutional alternative
care.
Forms of family-based care
Family based care
Foster family for 4 up to
8 foster children
Foster family
Kinship
family
Non-professional
foster family
Professional foster families of
up to 3 children
Short-term foster family
for emergency placement
for disabled children
for minor mothers
Specialized foster family
for children placed in
foster care based on
Polish Minor Act
Family-based care
• Organizer of family-based alternative care in
district;
• Coordinator of foster family;
• Support family (respite care);
• Financial support.
Institutional care
Institutional care
Residential care
facility
(district level)
Short-term
residential care
facility for
emergency
situations
Regional specialtherapeutic residential
care facility
(provincial level)
Residential
care facility
Specialisttherapeutic
residential
facility
Pre-adoptive
center
(provincial level)
Foster family
for up to 8
children
Goals of alternative care
Alternative care:
Temporary character,
Aim  child’s return to his or her biological
family.
 If the latter is not possible  aim  adoption.
Priority of family-based alternative care
environment to institutional one
Work with biological family
Challenges in implementation
of Family Support
and Alternative Care System Act
Polish law related to alternative care generally is
in line with de-institutionalisation depicted in
Common European Guidelines on transition from
institutional to community based care,
but PRACTICE?
Number of foster families increase very slow;
Small residential care institutions are opened
(increasing);
Challenges in implementation
of Family Support
and Alternative Care System Act
Standards of cooperation between organizer of
family based care, coordinator and foster family
(only initiatives developed by NGO’s);
Role of coordinator of foster families: support or
monitoring and control?
 No curricula of foster parent career – courses,
personal development, supervison;
 Almost no respite care available;
Cooperation between court for minors and
families, social services and foster families;
Challenges in implementation
of Family Support
and Alternative Care System Act
Do we follow the De-I?
pre-adoptive center for infants up to 1 year
old – 20 children per institution;
Regional special-therapeutic residential care
facility for 45 children;
No plan for care leavers with special needs,
the only solution is a big institution for people
with special needs;
Polish Foster Care Coalition
Mission:
implementation of child’s right to grow up in a family;
Children who cannot grow up in their biological families
have a better chance of development, proper family
figure and perspective of happy live through care
provided by foster families.
The family-based alternative care model, as opposed to
the institutional one, is more effective in spending public
financing dedicated to alternative care.
The Coalition acts as an educator, promoter and advocacy
entity, and strives for creation of good law in Poland.
Polish Foster Care Coalition
Polish Foster Care Coalition
has been working since 2004;
in 2011 is registered as an umbrella
organization: union of associations;
 20 member organizations, 4 associatied
member organizations, houour members;
Polish Foster Care Coalition
Main initiatives: advocacy
Social party during creation of Polish law regarding
alternative care;
 Organizing country-wide conferences to promote
fostering;
Organized National Congress on Foster Care (400
delegates, international and national speakers)
 Initiative of National Fostering Day (30 of May)
adopted by PL Parliament;
Initiative of National Fostering Year (2009) adopted by
PL Parliament;
Thank you!
Beata Kulig
E: [email protected]
M: +48.503.549.888

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