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Social workers rights increase in case of minors’ abuse

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Thursday, February 11
In cases of child abuse, social workers will be given authority to separate the child from the abusive family member, legal guardian or other perpetrator.

In the case of disobedience of the social worker's decision in connection with the separation of the child, the offender will be sentenced to administrative detention for up to 7 days or corrective works for the term of up to one month.

The Ministry of Health, Labour and Social Affairs, together with the Ministry of Justice, have initiated the draft law which will grant social workers greater authority. Changes will be made in the Prevention of Domestic Violence, Protection and Assistance of Victims of Domestic Violence law. The legislative changes have already been submitted to Parliament.

According to the draft law, in the case of the separation of a child from its family, the child’s opinion and wishes should be taken into account in accordance with the age of the individual. At the same time, at the age of 14, a minor has the right to appeal any decision in court for their own rights and interests.

The bill specifies the powers of the police as well. The police will be obligated to fulfill the decision of the separation of the child from its family and take action in case of disobedience.

In accordance with the new draft law, an abuser may be another individual as well, who is neither a parent nor a family member but still uses various forms of violence.

“Children living and working on the streets may also be the victims of violence. In such cases, it is important that the new legislative power be granted to social workers so that they can separate a child from their abuser, no matter if the violator is a parent or not,” reads the project description.