MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
On March 18, at the site of the Public Chamber of the Komi Republic, an expanded meeting of the regional Public Observatory Commission took place. In the presence of representatives of the State Council of the Komi Republic, the administration of the Head of the region, law enforcement agencies and regional media, public figures summed up the results of work for 2020. The Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia for the Komi Republic was represented by Aleksey Gichev, assistant to the head of the Department for the observance of human rights in the UIS.
As the chairman of the POC Eduard Bushuev noted, the activity of the commission in 2020 has significantly decreased compared to the previous period.
– POC members visited 13 of 17 institutions of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia in the Komi Republic. In total, there were 23 visits in 2020, and 45 in the past. Throughout the year, we worked on targeted, specific requests, and planned visits with a wide bypass of institutions, with personal receptions, were much less than planned.
According to Eduard Bushuev, in such conditions, proposals have appeared for new forms of work of the POC, for example, conducting interviews with convicts using video communication, as well as more active use of new formats for filing an appeal – by e-mail.
A large number of appeals, to which members of the PMC convicts and their relatives had to respond, related to the cancellation of long visits.
– In this part, we gave explanations in various formats that these restrictions were introduced at the level of the Russian Federation, that relatives who travel from different regions of Russia can become a source of infection. Until the epidemiological situation in the country is corrected, I think these restrictions will not be lifted, – Eduard Bushuev emphasized.
When visiting correctional institutions, members of the PMC paid attention to communal and living conditions, the quality of catering and the completeness of portions, and the provision of medical care. As Aleksey Gichev, assistant to the head of the Department for the Observance of Human Rights in the Penitentiary System, commented on this information, the overwhelming majority of the complaints the convicts applied for turned out to be unfounded.
In the past year, the POC members also got acquainted with how the access of convicted and imprisoned suspects and accused persons to court is organized in the institutions of the Federal Penitentiary Service and, using the example of SIZO-3 in Vorkuta, IK-49 in Pechora and IK-31 in Mikun, they made sure that all requirements. Lyudmila Ganova, a member of the POC and chairman of the society of disabled people of the Ust-Vymsky district, noted the positive results of interaction with the Federal Penitentiary Service in terms of temporary provision of prisoners with disabilities with technical means of rehabilitation and advice on creating a barrier-free environment in correctional institutions.
In addition, social activists have been solving other socially useful tasks throughout the year. For example, Elena Virzum in February-March organized concerts of creative groups for convicts and employees, as well as drawing master classes for women convicts. Thanks to Lyubov Maksimova, who is the director of the Institute of History and Law at SSU named after Pitirim Sorokin, the process of admission of convicts from correctional institutions of the Federal Penitentiary Service to the university was organized, as well as the work of a free legal clinic for convicts – students of the Faculty of Law answer questions via video link. And the deputy chairman of the POC Elena Shcherbina achieved a solution to the issue of providing temporary housing from the mobile fund in the city of Syktyvkar for persons released from prison and not having registration.
Summing up the conversation, Eduard Bushuev thanked the employees of the Federal Penitentiary Service for effective interaction:
– The POC members took part in all round tables and online seminars organized by the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia and the regional administration, working meetings with the leadership of the Federal Penitentiary Service to discuss pressing issues. They listen to the recommendations that we make on visits, they are not ignored, comments are eliminated as far as financial and temporal possibilities are concerned. We are grateful for the responsible approach in interaction with the PMC, assistance and cooperation. With such indifference to other people’s problems, we will be able to continue to work productively for the good of society.
Press service of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia for the Komi Republic
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.