Community based servicesSocial exclusion of persons with mental disabilities and their placing in residential institution encroach fundamental human rights. Organizations members of the Group of Common Actions in Media Strategies fight for respecting the rights of every person, irrespective of existing disability and action for the de-institutionalization and society reintegration of these persons.
De-institutionalization is a complex process which has to be accompanied by the proper community services. Creating and developing of placement services in the community (Community home, Supported living, Professional parental assistance, Personal Assistant/Specialized family placement, Mobile team etc.) represents an alternative to residential care and supports the community and family reintegration of the persons who previously were placed in residential institutions. And also, the role of these services is to prevent the other persons’ placement in residential institutions.
As opposed to the care in residential institutions, development of community placement services is axed on the necessities of persons with disabilities and their relatives/tutors. These services are intended to offer developmental support to the persons with disabilities based on individual plans of intervention. Depending of the individual needs, services can be offered at home and/or in the frame of community service by different specialists and can include: personal assistance (offering an adequate sustaining in all the aspects of daily life and personal care); occupational, physical or other types of therapy; behavioral supporting; escort; consultation; community integration; relaxing and free time activities; help to go to school and find a job; help to develop, keep and improve the competence and individual abilities; entertainment and care services; consultations for parents; mediation of the relation with other necessary services. Community and home services holds the services which can vary from minimal (for example, once a week) to 24 hours a day.
In the Republic of Moldova, the deinstitutionalization of persons with mental disabilities is just at the beginning of the way. Thus, at the policy change level, the Convention on the Rights of persons with disabilities was approved by the Government and is in the process of ratification by the Parliament.
At the level of strategies and legislation, the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family (MLSPF) developed the strategy for inclusion of persons with disabilities which is currently under consultation with other Ministries, following to be submitted for approval to the Parliament.
There was developed the draft Law on social inclusion of persons with disabilities which has to be improved, consulted with the representatives of civil society and other ministries and sent to Parliament for approval. At community level, although there were a number of community services developed with the support of various donors, the services for persons with mental disabilities are still poorly developed, which constitutes a barrier to their deinstitutionalization.
The “Community for All-Moldova” project, implemented through a partnership established among Keystone Human Services International Moldova Association, Open Society Institute / Mental Health Initiative, the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family and Hope and Homes for Children, grants support to the Ministry of Labor, Social Protection and Family in developing the legal framework for people with disabilities, the standards and regulations for new services for people with mental disabilities and supports the partnerships established between the Local Public Authorities and local NGOs to develop services of care and support for people with mental disabilities who have relocated from residential institutions in the communities.