Moscow Mayor to double payments to families of disabled children
Indexing benefits was the main item for discussion at a meeting of heads of metropolitan public bodies representing large families and parents of disabled children at the Krasnoselsky Social Rehabilitation Centre for Minors held on 9 October.
The mayor of Moscow, Sergey Sobyanin, was asked by Yulia Kamal, Chair of Moscow City Association of Disabled Children’s Parents and Children Disabled since Childhood, to consider increasing the level of payments to those who care for disabled children up to 18 years of age and those disabled since childhood up to 23 years of age. According to Kamal, current payments amount to 6,000 roubles. The Association is asking that the sum be raised by one and a half to twice its existing rate, according to the Moscow Government’s official website.
Many of our parents have limited means with which to care for these children, particularly single mothers. We are also asking for a one and a half to a threefold increase in payments to Group I and Group II disabled parents who are bringing up underage children, Kamal said, adding that statistics show there are 38,000 families raising disabled children in Moscow.
According to Sobyanin, metropolitan authorities intend to increase social payments to low-income families and families with disabled children at least twofold, and in some cases fivefold.
All benefits will be increased at least twofold, while some allowances for low-income families will be raised between three and fivefold. We will also see to it that other benefits are raised, said Sobyanin at the meeting. The mayor is sure that this proposal will be supported by deputies in the State Duma.
Natalya Artemyeva, a mother of many children who spoke at the meeting, suggested making changes to the Family Holidays programme. We would like every child under the age of 15 to have the opportunity of going on holiday with the rest of its family. The family would then have the choice of either taking the teenager with them or sending him or her to a camp. This can be very annoying for children. Mum goes on holiday with the young ones while the older child goes to a camp on their own, she explained.
At the end of the discussion, those present at the meeting agreed to set up a working group to help the public in collaborating with the authorities on issues relating to social support for large families and families with disabled children.
In conclusion, Sobyanin said that a working group to work up these proposals would be established as agreed at the meeting.