Russia: crimes against orphans have risen 428% in five years
Crimes against orphans have risen by 428% in five years
On 31 March, Anna Kuznetsova, the Federation’s Children’s Rights Commissioner, gave details of systematic abuses of the rights of children who have been left without parental care.
According to Kuznetsova, orphanages are violating the rights of children to safety, with the number of crimes committed by staff against children having increased by 428.6% over the past five years.
The number of particularly serious crimes against children has gone up 20-fold. Last year, 26 sexual-related assaults were reported, compared to just one in 2016. 37,000 children are currently living in orphanages.
“We have had an unprecedented number of orphans contacting us via social media to report awful incidents of abuse, sometimes without revealing their names. However, we always find ways of identifying the institution responsible and carry out a thorough investigation while also protecting the identity of the child”, said Kuznetsova.
Violations have also been reported to an orphans’ property rights. There is currently very little information on moveable and non-moveable assets that could belong to children. No steps are being taken to improve their financial situation, with only 39% of those eligible having received child support.
According to the Commissioner, children’s rights to health care are also being violated. Orphanages have a casual approach to examinations, providing neither medication nor medical products.
Kuznetsova’s office is currently working with the Federation’s Ministry of Education and Science to develop guidance that will help identify child abuse in orphanages.