Reset the System
Reset the SystemADOR COPIII Association conducts a national campaign for raising accountability and awareness - RESET THE SYSTEM – on the public and the authorities regarding the lack of implementation and inadequate compliance of Law no. 272/2004 on the protection and advocacy of child rights and the Law no. 273/2004 on the legal status of adoption, republished in 2012. Currently due to the lack of application of the relevant rules of law on child protection in Romania, each year thousands of children grow up behind cot bars in hospitals, while thousands of families would be able to adopt.
In the spirit of promoting the principles of family and civic values, representing a significant group of citizens interested in the adoption in Romania, but also advocating children's rights, ADOR COPIII Association addresses the child protection authorities and the civil society in Romania a public appeal, regarding the degrading and inhuman situation in which children from health institutions in Romania are, situations in which children's rights, the right to health and the law on child protection are flagrantly violated.
In this regard, as representatives of the civil society, we continually monitor the implementation of the law 272/2004, which refers to the special protection of the child deprived, either temporarily or permanently, of parental protection, but also of the law 273/2004 on the legal of adoption. Under existing rules enforcement, the children with social risk from health facilities, with the charge of the case responsible, should be given in foster care or, in some cases, to have the procedure of adoptability declared opened.
As stated in the report published by Unicef, regarding the Study of baby abandoned in hospitals in Romania, it requires immediate implementation of the new legislation and the development and use of a systematic and consistent monitoring and reporting system, which should improve the quality of the basic services for children and families – a necessary standard against child abandonment in Romania.
The underlying problemThe project was initiated as a monitoring result of the effects of adoption law that came into force in April 2012 and has as main beneficiaries the children abandoned in hospitals in Romania, severely neglected by the healthcare and social protection system.
Many of these children do not exist in social protection statistics and spend up to two years between the bars of a cot, do not see daylight and are not properly fed and stimulated, therefore developing retardation and other medical complications due to lack of age-appropriate stimulation, which diminishes their chances of reintegration into the natural family or integration in a foster or adoptive family.
The aim of the project
The aim of this project is to raise accountability and awareness of the phenomenon of extreme abandonment of these children, a nationwide problem.
The short term goal was to provide a solution to their immediate material and emotional needs, but also create decent caring conditions for children abandoned in hospitals.
The long term impact of the project is the decrease of adoptable abandoned children and the implementation of a modern social protection system, focused on their transit through the system and their integration into adoptive families.
The geographic areaNational
- Petitions addressed to the Prime Minister, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Labour, General Directorate of Social Assistance and Child Protection, Romanian Office for Adoptions
- Recruitment of volunteers
- Mass media reporting on the phenomenon of nationwide extreme abandonment
- Monitoring of the decision maker factors involved
- Purchase of supplies for the children
Results:The Social Inspection and The Ministry of Health conduct controls in several hospitals to analyze the situation.
The Romanian Office for Adoptions held a conference to present the state of implementation of Law 273/2004 on the legal status of adoptions, issues Order 617 of 18 December 2012, through which gives the authorities a clearer framework for the management of adoptive families.
On 22 December 2012, the government issues an emergency decree by which The Romanian Office for Adoptions is moved under the direction of the Ministry of Labour, Family, Social Protection and Elderly.
On 27 November 2012, the Government approves the law amending and supplementing Law no. 272/2004 on the protection and advocacy of children's rights.
We are invited by The General Directorate of Social Assistance and Child Protection to participate in the developing of a communication strategy between hospitals and social authorities and of modern rules to enforce the social protection law.
Over 80 children were taken out of hospital beds and integrated in the social protection system between October and December 2012.
Over 160 potential adoptive families benefitted from concealing about the adoption procedure between October and December 2012.
The improvement of hospitalization conditions for children abandoned and with social risk is reflected by creating play rooms with age-appropriate stimulating toys for children, changing the beds, the old mattresses and linens, endowing with storage cabinets, ordering five air conditioners for one of the children hospital wards, needed scales for children, neonatal pulse meter etc.
As an unintended effect, some directly concerned institutions have tried to cumber the campaign.
BeneficiariesHealth professionals have contributed to the training of volunteers and to giving a greater attention to children abandoned and with social risk.
ArgumentThe Reset the System campaign was supported through the media investigation of Antena 3, called 'Inferno of the forgotten children', producer Carmen Avram, which had a huge emotional impact on the Romanian civil society.
Several magazines, TV stations and radio stations have created materials that have raised awareness of the extreme abandonment phenomenon.