Perhaps all of us have faced with bureaucracy in our country. Sometimes some issues come to absurdity. The Head of Homeless Children Rehabilitation Center under Bishkek Mayor's Office Aleksey Petrushevsky today addressed to the editorial office of 24.kg news agency. The social worker of the Center came with him. She was holding a little sleeping baby. The baby was approximately about 4-5 months. But for this short period of life the baby has experienced a lot.
"On March 20 social workers received phone calls from neighbors, saying that suckling child is crying all day long and the whole family is drinking vodka. They couldn't get district officer on the phone; mobile phones (at that day) were turned off," said Aleksey Petrushevskiy. "So we had to go there with social worker and educator: if something happens with the baby we will be blame for unadopted measures. We entered the house and saw real hellhole. Drunken old woman was lying on the floor in the corridor, the baby was lying nearby. There were also two drunken men. And 17 years old (!) mother went for a walk, she was found dancing in night club. We have to take the baby, otherwise it would die there: dirty, pediculosis, intertrigos. We washed it, disinfected, bought baby foods and diapers. We went to Bishkek infant orphanage, wrote application asking to accept the baby for 2 months - the baby girl doesn't have certificate of birth and her mother doesn't have documents and lodging."
No admission without certificates!
"But the baby wasn't admitted upon the application. They asked certificate from the Commission on Children Affairs. It sits once a week. The Family and Children Support Department (FCSD) of Pervomaiskiy district met us halfway and held an extraordinary meeting and issued the statement. Now the infant orphanage requires permit of public health department. Where will be the baby all this time? Our center admits children older 3 years only. And what if she didn't get vaccinations?" the Head of the Center wonders.
"Nevertheless, it's already the sixth day our educators attend "basic training" and take care of the baby while we formalize documents. But there should be crisis centre for such children! The infant orphanage admits only abandoned children. But we don't want to expose the baby to be adopted, we just want to formalize all documents, give a status and Kyrgyz citizenship. Without documents she even doesn't exist! She is nobody without documents. Then it's her mother's turn. There are crisis centers under infant orphanages, but only for those who want to abandon child. In this case they agree to work with her in order to change her mind. But what should we do with this mom?" Aleksey Petrushevskiy shrugs his shoulders.
"What if the baby is admitted in Tokmak Infant Orphanage? Is it necessary to go to Bishkek's department and take permit? Then let's take it directly from the Parliament house! That's why FCSD and policemen are completely in loss. FCSD thinking about equipping an empty room as temporary room for kids if they are not admitted to infant orphanage until passing 300 steps. They can't take these children home. In such case half of the city can be taken. That's ridiculous! Everyone has families and problems... So, it is easier to leave child on the doorstep of the ministry or to return for mother in hellhole. That's why children die. It is easier to confirm death than to collect all necessary documents. Why it is impossible to admit a child temporarily? It's not child's fault, we don't abandon him and formalized all the documents," he said.
What to do?
"This case is not the only case, such things happen often, - the chief Specialist of FCSD Zeerkul Dzheenbaeva notes. - We raid all the time. We take minors away and don't know where to direct them because orphanages don't admit not abandoned children. And parents also don't abandon their children saying that it is just a hard period in life. But where is the guarantee that the child won't die during this period? In the late autumn homeless people lived outside, we bother with their little baby, but it wasn't admitted. We have to find a flat in Bakai-Ata new housing development and settle the parents there. There were no windows, rubber sheet was given. We wrote an application to Sverdlovsk district to monitor their further life.
So, again problems, now with this 4 month baby girl. It's impossible to leave her with the mother who drinks and who is on the racket. That's why we force Petrushevskiy's center to admit the baby, but it can't. If the inspection comes, he will be punished. But what should we do such children? While we appeal to municipal health departments, children can't starve and get cold," Zeerkul Dzheenbaeva said.
She considers the opening of temporal orphanages as a way out of the situation. At least for couple months. For this period one can define children's fate, treat their parents from alcoholism. According to her, mothers are treated free of charge in dependency clinic.
"If the baby has mother, we can't take it without documents. Otherwise, the baby can be given another name and its mother won't be able to prove her maternity, - the social worker of Bishkek Specialized Infant Orphanage Chinara Kozhobekova comments. - We are always ready to admit children; the documents should be formalized in the right way in order the baby won't be adopted. This is not a problem, give the baby to FCSD and let them work. They will do everything and formalize all the documents. It takes two minutes."
But FCSD doesn't think so. Otherwise they would formalize the documents long ago. The social worker answered the question about why they can't help and why children have to suffer because of bureaucracy: "We have such laws, otherwise we will be fired."
In a word: not allowed. And that's it. Die, but won't be able to break the bureaucratic walls?