Tailored Support for Large Families
The People’s Khural of the Republic of Kalmykiya has presented a new bill on large families to the National Parliament, according to a TASS report (click here for details – сообщает.) The bill clearly defines the term ‘families with many children’ and sets out the support available to them across the Russian Federation. Currently, levels of support vary from one region to the next.
The bill (законопроекту) states that large families will receive a discount of at least 50% on all communal services, free prescriptions and free use of public transport.
Children from large families will be given priority in applying for nurseries. School children will be given free books and will be able to claim back the cost of school uniform. If the average income per person within a large family is lower than the minimum wage, all the children in the family will be given free school meals. Once a month the children will be able to visit museums, exhibitions, cultural sites and leisure centres free of charge. They will also be able to stay in health resorts, sanatoria and rehabilitation centres for free during the summer months.
The bill was drafted with the aim of addressing the country’s demographic problems and raising birth rates.
Diana Zevina from the foundation Our Children, who heads up its programme for assisting families in crisis and preventing social orphans, commented on the bill. “Obviously, it is essential to support families with a large number of children. However, it is not enough simply to consolidate the support available to them. We also need to ensure that the financial and practical support we provide matches the needs of individual families and is intended to address the problems that are unique to their circumstances. We must be able to help large families with the challenges of daily life and be able to respond quickly when problems arise and prevent them from occurring in the first place.”