OSPOD - Authority for social and legal protection of children
The purpose and goal are to provide all children with protection and suitable conditions so that they can live their childhood happily, contentedly, and so that they do not come into conflict with their surroundings.
Where can you find OSPOD?
OSPOD is a part of self-government and you can find it at the Municipal Authority. It usually falls under the Department of Social Affairs or the Social Department. If necessary, the child is subject to a specific OSPOD according to the child’s permanent residence and has a designated key worker.
What does OSPOD do?
- the issue of substitute family care (adoption, foster care, guardianship, custody to a natural person other than the parents)
- situation of children in the family in connection with the divorce of parents
- regulation of the contact between children and parents
- matters of single mothers
- maintenance regulation
- denial and determination of paternity
- children with an order for institutional care or other educational measure
- criminal activity of children and youth
- educational problems of children and youth (truancy, running away from home, substance abuse)
- criminal activity committed on children (cruelty, abuse, neglect, corrupting the morals)
What are the rights of OSPOD?
- meeting a child alone without the presence of parents
- carrying out social investigation in the place of residence, at school and other facilities without prior agreement
- requesting reports from other sources – school, doctor, psychologist
- collaborating with other institutions and filing petitions
What are the responsibilities of OSPOD?
- assessing the child’s needs and individually planning steps to stabilize the family
- protecting the family and the child
- providing information – OSPOD is obliged to inform parents about all the steps it carries out
- receiving reports – a parent, the child or anyone who finds out that something is wrong with the child can turn to OSPOD; these can be submitted in person, by e-mail, by phone or anonymously
You don’t have to be afraid of OSPOD. it is here to support and stabilize the family. Social and legal protection is provided free of charge to all children without exception and any discrimination based on race, colour, religion, gender, language, political opinion or social origin. A social curator for children and adolescents usually works at OSPOD. There are also social curators for adults. You can find them at the Municipal Authorities, e.g. the Department of Social Prevention and Assistance.
SOCIAL CURATOR FOR ADULTS
- provides social assistance to persons at risk of social exclusion, in particular:
- persons released from prison
- persons released from a medical facility after the end of treatment for addiction
- persons released from an educational facility for institutional care or juvenile rehabilitation, or from foster care after reaching the age of majority
- homeless people
- persons at risk of being drawn to crime
SOCIAL CURATOR FOR ADULTS PROVIDES:
- social counselling for persons at risk of social exclusion
- assistance in getting a new identity document of the client (in case of its loss)
- assistance in finding accommodation (cooperates with reception centres, halfway houses, lodging houses, low-threshold day centres, charities)
- counselling on arranging benefits in material need, leads its clients to cooperate with the labour office
- visiting clients in prison in case of interest, cooperates with the Prison Service of the Czech Republic
- upon request, reporting to the courts on the conditional release of convicts from imprisonment (regarding the family circumstances and housing options of convicts)
- at the written request of the client serving a custodial sentence, conducting a social investigation in the family in order to mediate the client’s contact with family members
- provision and processing of sensitive documents
- the Prison Service sends reports of impending release from custody, imprisonment, as well as reports of changes (e.g. transfer to another prison, transfer from custody to prisons, etc.) to curators
SERVICES PROVIDED IN CONNECTION WITH THE ACTIVITIES OF SOCIAL CURATORS
- arranging shelters, asylum accommodation
- personal hygiene centre – service intended for people who are interested in the use of sanitary facilities and who cooperate with a social curator
- arranging the possibility of doing the laundry
- sometimes even a doctor/medic free of charge without insurance