A-11 Initiative has lodged an initiative for assessment the constitutionality of the Law on financial support to the Family with children

A 11 Initative has lodged to Constitutional Court an Initiative for assessment the constitutionality of article 25, paragraphs 1-6 of the Law on Financial Support to the Family with Children.

Disputed article results in abolition of the right to the parental allowance if even one child in a household as not received all necessary vaccinations according to law or does not attend elementary school and obligatory preschool education.

On the basis of the numerous researches and statistical data from the reports of government bodies, as well as national and international organisations, it is apparent that the said provisions have a disproportionally negative effect on children from the most vulnerable Roma families. The Republic of Serbia has drastic inequalities in compulsory immunization coverage among Roma and non – Roma children. The percentage of children, who prematurely leave elementary education or do not attend obligatory preschool education, is drastically bigger among Roma children. The reasons Roma children remain outside educational system are connected with numerous and specific difficulties that members of Roma national minority are faced. Those reasons cannot be solved with additional punishment of particularly marginalized children, but rather with prescribing measures which will address this particular problem.

On this occasion, legal coordinator of the A-11 Initiative states that “Disputed article violates unity of the legal order because the specific regulations already sanction children who are not immunized or if they do not attend school or obligatory preschool education. On the other hand, public policies already prescribe measures that State undertakes to solve this problem among children that come from most vulnerable Roma families. Disputed article completely neglects especially difficult situation of Roma minorities, as well as the difficulties they face, especially in the area of health care and education”.

Because of the disproportionally negative effect the contested provisions have on the rights of the children that come from the most vulnerable Roma families, these articles are not in accordance with guarantees of non- discrimination stipulated by the European Convention on Human Rights, Convention on the Rights of the Child as well as International Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, adds Trifkovic.

Considering the difficult and unrecoverable consequences that the application of the article 25, paragraphs 1-6 of the Law on financial support to the family with children has on children that come from the most vulnerable categories of population, A-11 Initiative for Economic and Social rights has proposed to the Constitutional Court to, in accordance with its power and practices, urgently suspend application of disputed article until the determination of its unconstitutionality.