30 Nov The hackathon arrives in Romania
The event was organized during the week of the International Day Against Domestic Violence when we rise awarness of the problems encountered by women victims of domestic violence.
The event was organized at Hotel Carol, in the Eminescu hall, from 3 pm to 8 pm. The event was attended by 27 people from different sectors: social workers who work with women victims of domestic violence, a survivor of domestic violence, a representative of the Buchaest Police responsible for the prevention of domestic violence, social inspectors from the public sector, represenatives of the Social Assistance Directorates, a representative of the National Agency for Equal Opportunities, project managers, psychologists working with victims of domestic violence, as well as representatives of other NGOs helping women and children victims of domestic violence.
The participants were asked to introduce themselves and their work. Lidia Stoichici presented the context of the event (the ACTIV project, the guidebook) and the agenda. The participants were divided into 4 groups, 5-6 people at each table and each table and one raportour that summaried the solutions and they answered to the 4 questions listed bellow. They had 5 minutes of thinking and then another 15 minutes of group discussions. At the end, each of the four rapporteurs presented the proposed solutions. Here are the questions:
- Why it is not enough the support received by women victims of domestic violence for professional integration ?
- How can we involve/work with companies?
- How to develop synergies between the different actors involved in the process?
- What the ACTIV toolkit can offer?
The agenda of the event was the following:
- 15:00 – 15:30 Welcoming participants, networking,
- 15:30 – 16:00: ACTIV project presenation and metodology
- 16:00 – 16.20: Round 1
- 16.25 – 16.45: Round 2
- 16.50 – 17.10: Round 3
- 17.15 – 17.35: Round 4
- 17.35 – 18.00: Concusion, debates, final presentation of the solutions
Eeach of the four reportors presented the conclusions of the four questions discussed at each table.
The solutions proposed by the participants are the following:
1. How can we involve/work with companies?
- To conclude agreements with companies in order to hire women victims of domestic violence.
- Legislative – tax exemptions for companies that hire victims of domestic violence.
- Prepare a Guide for the companies with the particularities of the victim of domestic violence – distributed to all companies.
- Raising awareness at the level of managemetn of the company about victims of domestic violence – use testimonials, statistics, etc.
- To involve volunteers from companies to visit the centers, to meet the victims of domestic violence.
- Companies should hire a specialist on social issues.
- Training the victim in a certain field to be hired in companies.
2. Why it is not enough the support received by women victims of domestic violence for professional integration?
- Creating jobs in companies while maintaining confidentiality for victims of domestic violence.
- Much better collaboration at institutional level, social assistance departments, companies, schools, kindergartens, on specific specific needs.
- Much more accurate information campaigns on the real situation in society on victims.
- Companies to offer qualification / conversion training courses for victims of domestic violence.
- Informing companies about the problems of victims of domestic violence.
- Fiscal facilities for companies that provide support to victims of domestic violence.
- Companies to offer after-school programs for the children of victims of domestic violence.
- There are not enough social services, kindergartens, schools with extended working hours to support victims of domestic violence.
- To motivate victims of domestic violence to maintain their jobs on long term.
- Creation of a competency assessment service.
- Creating a guide with all the vocational courses for a second chance, qualification schools.
- Free training courses that will help victims to get a job.
- Legislative proposition to create a special classification in the category of subsidized unemployment for victims of domestic violence and providing tax facilities to employers who create jobs for these categories.
- Free psychological counseling for victims offered by the state institutions.
- Changing the general mentality of state institutes and companies in the sense of better understanding the specifics of victims of domestic violence.
- Adapting services to the particular needs of victims.
- Vocational counseling for understanding the responsibilities of a job.
- Guide- Establishment of an updated database of all social services offered by public and private organizations.
- Creating a working group between NGOs and public insitutions to support women.
3. How to develop synergies between the different actors involved in the process?
- Social partners should work togher in developing social services for the victims of domestic violence.
- By organizing regular working meetings, creating discussion groups, exchanging experience between NGOs and companies.
- Creating a Guide for private and public social services in Bucharest – Ilfov.
- Developing a working group once a month, with discussions on concrete cases or common topics of interest, with physical meetings on more frequent exchanges of experience (this also helps to know the people behind the phone or public or private institutions and strengthens collaborations).
- Increasing the number of collaboration agreements between institutions.
- Media campaigns to support the development of partnerships.
- Creating a common work platform.
- By introducing work norms / work procedures at the level of public institutions initiated by those who have problems in an institution, so as to create functional frameworks.
- Changing the legislation so that the allowance for the child victim, to follow the child and the parent victim, because currently there are many situations in which the allowance is passed on the name of the father who is also the agressor and the mother and childen, victims are away from home.
4. What can the ACTIV toolkit offer?
- Guide of services for victims of domestic violence that includes recommendations, steps that victims must follow to get out of that situation.
- Models of good practice, testimonials of the victims who managed to get out of the crisis situation.
- Social inclusion of the victims of domestic violence, the steps to be followed.
- Raise awareness on the impact that domestic violence on children, family, society so that everyone understands that it is a matter of general interest.
- Methods of preventing domestic violence.
- Contact details for counselors, social services, institutions that help victims.
- Data on companies that employ victims of domestic violence.
The event was very dynamic, very appreciated by the participants, all participants expressed their opinions. As we were unable to hold events due to the pandemic for two years, the participants were happy to meet and discuss the issues of socio-professional reintegration of women victims of domestic violence, as this is a challenge for all.
The involvement of companies in supporting women victims of domestic violence remains a problem in Romania. The management of the companies does not realize that the companies are also affected by domestic violence, that people have low productivity, are absent from work, etc.
Another issue that was intensely discussed was the help given to victims of domestic violence by state institutions, Sector Social Assistance Directorates, National Agency for Equal Opportunities (ANES). ANES announced that they have opened several counseling centers in all counties, but in reality many of them are not functional.
Another issue that could become a legislative proposal was the allocation of children from families victims of domestic violence, which should follow the child.
When asked what the ACTIV toolkit can offer, the participants referred to what information should be contained (contact details, database, etc.) rather than what form, how this toolkit should be.
In the final presentations and discussions, participants discussed the need for awareness and involvement of companies in supporting victims of domestic violence, by creating a guide to be sent to all companies, through tax facilities for companies that hire victims of domestic violence and creating dedicated jobs.
Another intensely discussed issue, was the need to create a database / guide that included available social services and a guide with instructions that victims of domestic violence can follow to reintegrate into society.