Russian authorities instructed to facilitate NGOs’ access to services market
The Federation’s Ministry of Labour and Social Protection has made a number of recommendations to regional executive authorities to remove barriers that are preventing socially orientated NGOs (SONGOs) from accessing the social services market. The recommendations have been drawn up by the Ministries of Labour and Economic Development at the behest of Olga Golodets, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister.
The Ministry of Labour has said that federal law No.442 on “Foundations of social services to Russian citizens” makes provision for SONGO access to the social services market. However, improvements to the system can be made by taking advantage of the specific social services that NGOs can provide and by removing restrictions on social service access for organisations with at least five years’ experience in the field whilst not discouraging volunteer involvement.
The Ministry of Labour has proposed drawing up lists of social services that incorporate the practices of the State, NGOs and individual entrepreneurs working in social services in order to identify in-demand services. Registers of social service providers should be made available on State agency websites and routinely updated. The Labour Ministry is also looking into the possibility of identifying social service suppliers based on their geographical location, as well as categories of service recipients.
The recommendations state that regional executive authorities should set out the demand for social services and give an idea as to the volume and time span involved in their provision.
Experts from the NGO sector, together with representatives from business and State agencies, met to discuss the Bill on the Provision of Social Services at the beginning of October.
Russian authorities have to report on progress made on implementing these recommendations to the Labour Ministry by 15 November.
Author: Olga Vorobeva