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Social mission of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation and new formats of work
The Civic Chamber Council of the new, seventh composition held its first meeting in Moscow
On July 14, the first face-to-face meeting of the Civic Chamber Council of the new, seventh composition took place in Moscow at Victory Museum. The meeting was aimed at identifying priority areas of work for the next three years.
The President of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation, Lydia Mikheeva, emphasized that the Civic Chamber had a fairly high level of trust amongst citizens. “I would like to note with pleasure that the level of trust has increased significantly. And we simply do not have the right to move back or lose our position.”
“By creating new formats of work, coordinating new projects, actively working with appeals and issues brought in by citizens, we can further increase the significance of the Civic Chamber,” she said.
She recalled that the most important event for the new composition of the Civic Chamber was the online meeting of the Russian President with Civic Chamber representatives.
“This is also a good indicator of our high performance level. While preparing for this meeting, our colleagues conducted serious work in order to formulate the relevant directions for discussion. Almost all of them were approved by the President in one way or another. Now we can focus on and start implementing the tasks set forth by the President,” she stated.
First in line is the proactive position on public oversight regarding the implementation of support measures taken during the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Commission headed by Elena Topoleva-Soldunova is doing a great job here. In particular, we are working together in order to improve the support system for NPOs affected by the pandemic,” said Lydia Mikheeva.
According to her, the Civic Chamber will also continue to closely monitor measures to support the population and business.
Another area of work is public evaluation of draft laws adopted as further developments of the amendments to the Constitution. “In this regard, we proposed drafting a special report on assessing the social effect of the amendments, and this idea was supported by the President. As early as next week, we plan to hold hearings on a new bill submitted to the State Duma, aimed at additional support for children and families in situations when guardianship authorities have certain questions for parents.”
According to her, the President separately spoke about the need for citizens to provide feedback in order to quickly respond to emerging and potential conflicting situations.
Another extremely important social mission is the participation of the Civic Chamber in the development of decisions on targeted financing of rare diseases in children.
“The President also enquired about this directly. We have all the necessary expertise,” said Lydia Mikheeva, recalling that the Civic Chamber had already actively participated in the legislative work on palliative care and provision of medicinal drugs.
“The President also directly asked us to conduct monitoring in terms of adjustment of national projects and the social effect of their implementation, especially in the regions,” said the President of the Civic Chamber.
The Vice-President of the Civic Chamber Alexander Galushka stressed that “each national project has its own specifics and issues that need to be discussed and promoted. And such an opportunity has now presented itself – together with colleagues from Civic Chamber commissions, regional civic chambers and the best experts, we will formulate substantive, detailed adjustments to national projects.”
Speaking about the successful projects of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation, Lydia Mikheeva recalled that this year the Chamber became the main platform for meetings of the working group on drafting proposals for amendments to the Constitution, and was also able to ensure independent public oversight of the nationwide vote on adopting the amendments.
The head of the working group on public monitoring on voting, Maxim Grigoriev, noted that this work would continue and announced plans to hold expert hearings on amendments to the electoral legislation in the very near future in order to consolidate the successful experience gained during the recent nationwide vote.
“526 thousand observers and more than 1,600 public organizations were involved in this work, once again confirming that the system of civic chambers is the basis of civil society. No other institution could have handled this properly. There has never been such a large project involving numerous people. This gives us reason to believe that we represent the interests of the majority of civil society in Russia,” he said.
“Despite all these achievements, there is no time to waste – in less than two months elections are due to be held to elect regional leaders. The training of observers has already begun,” concluded Maxim Grigoriev.
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