The Ways to Improve the Operation of the Control Points were Presented in the Verkhovna Rada

March 15, 2017

Inter-factional association of the Members of Parliament "Parliamentary Platform for the Future of Donbas", OSCE Project Coordinator in Ukraine, Council of Europe Office in Ukraine, non-governmental organizations "Foundation.101" and "Donbas-SOS" held a round table to discuss the ways to improve the operation of the entry-exit control points.

A package of recommendation to solve urgent problems at entry-exit points’ operation was presented by experts of Donbas-SOS, Foundation.101 and Parliamentary Platform for the Future of Donbas as a result of round table. The recommendations are as follow:

1. Approve universal standards of entry-exit control points operation. Setting uniform requirements to the checkpoints allows providing a consistent approach to their conditions and operation. Apparently, a separate state company should be created to manage existing control points and ensure effective coordination of its work and appropriate financial and economic management.

2. Increase of through-flow capacity. Increasing of working hours at the control points with a perspective of the transition to 24-hour service, expansion of the necessary infrastructure, including the number of booths and equipment for inspecting people, provision of a sufficient number of personnel, in particular female workers, organization of reverse movement allows to decrease a duration of queueing which sometimes reaches up to 7 hours.

3. Promote the freedom of movement across the line of contact. Approval of the necessary amendments to implement the Action Plan for the implementation of the National Strategy on human rights for the period til 2020, that was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers’ decree #1393-r dated November 23, 2015, it is vital to amend the "Temporal order of the control over the movement of people, vehicles and goods across the line of contact in Donetsk and Luhansk regions".These amendments will allow restoring the possibility of public transport movement through the line of contact.

4. OSCE monitoring. Establishment of permanent monitoring stations of the OSCE that operates the same hours that entry-exit control points will have a positive impact on the security level at the control points.

5. Improve waiting conditions. Construction of basic infrastructure, such as additional shelters from the adverse weather (shelters from the sun and rain during the warm season and heating points during the cold season) acceptable for people with specific needs, an appropriate water supply, illumination and sanitary conditions at the control points will plummet psychological tension and dissatisfaction of civilians. It will also create decent conditions for people waiting at the control points.

6. Establish additional medical aid points. Medical point, working the same hours as the control points would fundamentally improve situation with the provision of timely and qualified medical aid.

7. Set up video observation. Equipment of the places where officers work with people and verify their documents,vehicles and baggage with surveillance cameras would protect from possible acts of corruption.

8. Improve staff training. Providing special trainings for the checkpoints’ officers (State Border Guard Service, State Fiscal Service, and State Security Service) using the best international experience and standards will promote an acceleration of performance as well as ensure an appropriate level of communication and treatment of the local community.

9. Develop further proposals for operational improvements. It is suggested to draft specific lists of improvements for each of the entry-exit control points that will consider their individual characteristics.

10. Implement public initiatives and international organizations’ projects. Jointly coordinated efforts of state agencies, Ukrainian NGOs and international organizations would promote a faster solving of several urgent problems faced by people queueing at the entry-exit control points.

11. "Hot line" and feedback. Launch of the "hot line" with a support of non-governmental and international organizations and an opportunity to leave complaints and proposals directly at the control points would ensure a rapid information distribution about specificities of checkpoints functioning as well as systematize the observations of the further operational improvements.

12. Administration centers and provision of the free legal aid. Administration Service Centres and free legal aid centres placed directly at the checkpoint would add to solving the real challenges, which the civilians are faced on the uncontrolled territory, and create a positive feeling of care about citizens by the authorities.

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