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NGO’s warn the competent institutionsShelter are not salvation for Roma children

Rose Petkova

The number of Roma children who beg on the street because of drugs, likely will continue to increase because the shelters is not a solution, warn NGOs dealing with child protection.
after the alarming data presented at the meeting of the Local Prevention Council of  municipality Centar, that minors between the ages of eight years and up, take heroin, and do robberies and attacks, especially at foreigners, are more frequent, organizations working with children seeking state to act urgently to reduce this trend.
- The problem can be solved by the reception and shelter centers. They work 16 hours, and then the children are again on the street, so there’s no effect. In other countries, if for the second time minors are brought in care centers, parents will be deducted for child neglect. Here we have no such legislation. The number of these children is increasing rapidly and I think that will be further increased - says Ahmed Jasharevski the Roma Community Center "DROM" which confirms that they are aware with the information referred to in the media.
According to him, the competent institutions should begin to work with parents and the decision locates at changing the legislation, in part concerning the protection of children.
- If more than 75 percent of Roma are social cases , jobless, with a monthly allowance of 20 or 30 euros, what we can expect? One factor here is education, so that parents who do not give  the child in school, and very probably have not completed school. I think you will need to react quickly, and also to change the legislation - said Jasharevski.
The First Children's Embassy in the world Megjasi points that the solution can be found at the common approach of all relevant institutions - schools, centers, ministries, health institutions, NGOs and the Ombudsman.
- These juveniles need constant medical and psychological assistance, but there is no institution that is willing to help because of their age from 5 to 14 years, which for several years are dependent on heroin and glue. This category of children often falls into criminal activities in order to reach for money for drugs, but no strategy on how to prevent it. Fines do not help as the place to solve the problem, children are forced to remain longer in the street and beg to be able to pay their fines - say from Megjasi.
They believe that the state is the One that needs to re-socialize them in the regular educational process and to accommodate socially and materially.
- Coming into contact with parents and caregivers of these children go very hard because of their non-permanent dwellings. Thus they are deprived of the opportunity to receive counseling, education, motivation for treatment - regarded Megjasi.
Meanwhile, according to the organization, the number of juvenile drug users increases, and thus the risks of overdose and transmission of HIV, hepatitis C and other blood and sexually transmitted infections increases.