Looser measures of isolation and more adequate accommodation for children with behavioral disorders
Upon completing the investigation instigated over a child falling from the building of the Center for the Protection of Infants, Children and Youth - "Drinka Pavlović" in Belgrade, the Protector of Citizens suggested that the institution immediately set up physical barriers, ease isolation measures due to adverse effects they may have on beneficiaries and provide for a more adequate accommodation for children with pronounced behavioral disorders.
In the report, the Protector of Citizens suggested that the center urgently set up physical barriers in risky areas, both at the place where the child fell in July 2020 and died as a result of the injuries and in all other places where the safety of beneficiaries could be endangered, given the already identified risks in the behavior of individual beneficiaries.
The Protector of Citizens further suggests that "Drinka Pavlović" Home should review the isolation measures taken so far and consult in that regard the epidemiological service and the line ministry, in order to take less restrictive measures in the event of a risk of infection communicability among the beneficiaries, having primarily in mind the impact (negative effects) of long-term isolation of the children in an institutionalized accommodation.
In the report, the Protector of Citizens highlights the need for the Home "Drinka Pavlović" to achieve the necessary cooperation with the competent institutions in order to provide more adequate accommodation for children with severe behavioral disorders, the work of their care in the form of protection or treatment that is in accordance with their functioning.
Assessing the actions of the controlled bodies in the domain of their competencies, the Protector of Citizens determined that there was no personal accountability of the employees of the Home "Drinka Pavlović" in this unfortunate event, but that existing measures should be reviewed and improved in order to improve beneficiaries’ safety.
The Protector of Citizens believes that it is necessary for the Home "Drinka Pavlović" to take activities and measures to ensure the safety of beneficiaries in cases where they put themselves in situations risky for life and health, and especially in conditions where such behavior can be expected due to isolation measures imposed due to the spread of Covid-19 virus infection.