Response stories

Protecting kids from discrimination at school

The sister of a client with TB approached the REActor based in a friendly NGO, “100 Percent Life Ivano-Frankivsk” (Charitable Organization), asking for help in dealing with the situation in the school that her nephews attended.

Anna, the Project’s client, is currently undergoing inpatient treatment at a local lung disease center, and the school administration where her kids are enrolled has found out about this. On the basis of their mother’s diagnosis, the school’s administration began to discriminate against the minors on a regular basis. It even threatened to take steps demanding that the kids be removed from the family home. They argued that the “lack of adequate parental care and supervision due to their mother’s illness” required the children to live with their aunt.

Moreover, the school administration repeatedly questioned the health of the client’s children and tried to separate them from other students. On multiple occasions, threats and insults in this vein were made in the presence of the kids and their fellow students, thus negatively affecting both their psychological well-being and academic performance.

The REActor provided an initial legal consultation for Anna’s sister. Apart from that, together with the client’s sister, he drafted a letter to the school administration explaining the provisions of the anti-discrimination legislation and attached an evaluation report detailing the children’s living arrangements and the certification of good health. On top of this, the children were provided with psychological assistance and support by specialists from a friendly organization.

Once the letter was received by the school administration, they immediately discontinued the misguided practice and never again summoned the client’s sister to school or threatened the kids.