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The City Municipality of Vračar is the winner of the award given by the Protector of Citizens, in cooperation with the Team for Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction of the Government of the Republic of Serbia and the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities - Association of Towns and Municipalities of Serbia fourth year in a row, to cities, municipalities and city municipalities in the Republic of Serbia which contributed the most over the past year to the development of all forms of accessibility on their territory, i.e. in their surroundings.

The Municipality of Svilajnac was acknowledged for its continuous work on timely planning and improving accessibility, while the City of Niš was acknowledged for its contribution to improving the accessibility of the city center.

The awarding of prizes, acknowledgments, praises and certificates of appreciation to the local self-government units will be organized on 30 October 2020.

Following the Protector of Citizens’ Recommendation, the Ministry of Interior issued an order to all organizational units to change the existing manner of handling citizens’ submissions, meaning that the decisions on citizens’ requests need to be made as administrative acts i.e. to include the rationale and the instruction on legal remedy.

Upon completing the procedure of controlling the work of the Ministry of Interior in August 2020, the Protector of Citizens issued a Recommendation to the Ministry to qualify future citizens' submissions according to the content, to apply measures and activities within its competence and to decide in legally specified form, bearing in mind that in handling citizens’ requests in the past, it did not decide in the form of an administrative act.

The Ministry of Interior informed the Protector of Citizens that it had sent a recommendation on changing the manner of work to Ministry’s organizational units, which within their competencies applied the Law on General Administrative Procedure, for consistent implementation in the future.

b_280_0_16777215_00_images_Milica.jpegIn order to promote and affirm child rights in our country within the event "Children's Week” scheduled this year from 5 to 11 October in altered circumstances due to the epidemiological concerns, the Protector of Citizens made a video featuring celebrities who addressed the children from Serbia and extended their support.

Famous basketball player Milica Dabović, actor Miloš Petrović and "YouTube" performer Vuk Vukašinović addressed the children about the protection from bad influences, the need to pursue their dreams and not give up what they love, as well as about all their rights.

The video may be accessed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OaDGz8chkw4.

 

Citizens' appeals to the inspection bodies in the city of Belgrade regarding smoke, steam and odors coming from catering facilities, especially those operating within residential buildings, indicate not only the frequency of such situations, but also the need for more precise legal regulations, as further requirements for performing such activities are not specified.

Therefore, in the Opinion issued to the City of Belgrade, the Protector of Citizens indicates to the necessity to regulate additionally the requirements for equipping catering facilities, relevant to smoke, steam and odor exhaustion, taking into account, above all, the efficient environmental protection against these harmful influences, in accordance with the powers delegated to local self-government units by the Law on Hospitality.

Accessibility of the environment, services and information is a prerequisite for establishing social contacts, independence and inclusion of persons with disabilities in everyday life. At the online panel, Secretary General of the Protector of Citizens’ Secretariat, Ms. Olja Jovičić added that the existence of different types of barriers in the environment, however, prevented a large number of public space beneficiaries from exercising those rights.

Four years ago, the Protector of Citizens, in cooperation with the Team for Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction of the Government of the Republic of Serbia and the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities, established the local self-government units award for contributing to the development of all forms of accessibility in their territory with a view to raising awareness on the importance of accessibility. Ms. Jovičić reminded that for the fourth time in a row, the Protector of Citizens announced a public call this year for awards to cities, municipalities and city municipalities that in 2018 had contributed the most to the development of all forms of accessibility in their territory, and that the decision on awarded initiatives was underway.

The Accessibility Award was set up as an expression of a need to achieve a more inclusive society in Serbia, to point out the breakthroughs of individuals or institutions in creating good practice examples, which contribute to improving the quality of life of all persons and to promote such examples of good practice in order to achieve their broad application. We strive for a society where each and every person will be enabled to live independently and participate in every walk of life on an equal footing as all the others and accessibility is a prerequisite for everybody’s full participation in the society, Ms. Jovičić has pointed out.

In addition to Secretary General Ms. Olja Jovičić, the panelists were the representatives of the US Agency for International Development, Team for Social Inclusion and Poverty Reduction of the Government of the Republic of Serbia, the Serbian Philanthropic Forum, Eurobank, as well as the representatives of city municipalities and institutions from Serbia.

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