STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru

 
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY
              IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION
              REPORT FOR 2019

www.oprf.ru
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
STATE OF THE
CIVIL SOCIETY
IN THE RUSSIAN
FEDERATION
REPORT
FOR 2019
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
UDK [324/324+338]:328.181(470+571)’’2019’’
BBK 65.9(2Рос)+66.3(2Рос)+67.400.6(2Рос)                                                      Contents
       Д63

                                                                                              INTRODUCTION		                                                                           4
D63   Report on the state of civil society in the Russian Federation for 2019 — М.,
                                                                                              1. INSTITUTIONS OF PUBLIC CONTROL AND FORMATION OF
      the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation, 2019.
                                                                                                  “PEOPLE’S AGENDA”		                                                                   6
ISBN 978-5-89644-136-6
                                                                                              		Citizens’ petitions as a tool to understand the “people’s agenda”                      8
                                                                                              		Regional civic chambers as public-state dialog sites                                  12
                                                                                              		Public councils: new role in the work of authorities                                   21
Inter-commission working group to prepare the report L.Y. Mikheeva,
                                                                                              		Civil society activists in the field of public control                                 27
V.A. Fadeev, M.S. Anichkin, V.I. Vinnitsky, V.V. Grib, N.A. Daikhes, N.M. Ignatenko,
E.A. Istyagina-Yeliseeva, A.N. Kovalchuk, S.A. Kuznetsova, A.N. Maksimov, M.A. Pogosyan,      		Public Monitoring Committees (PMCs): humanitarian and social tasks                    32
N.B. Pochinok, A.A. Malkevich, A.V. Razbrodin, S.I. Rybalchenko, E.V. Sutormina,              		Public expertise: contribution of civil society to the quality
E.A. Topoleva-Soldunova, E.M. Tsunaeva, I.E. Chestin, A.V. Shipulin, I.L. Shpektor.                  of institutional environment 		                                                   35
                                                                                              		Local and territorial self-governments as an environment for forming
The working group expresses its gratitude for taking part in the work and the                        civic engagement 		                                                               44
materials provided to members of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation
V.A. Bocharov, I.E. Diskin, A.E. Dudareva, Y.K. Zimova, K.A. Komkov, A.R. Krganov,            		Media environment and challenges of information society                               49
E.Sh. Kurbangaleyeva, Y.V. Ogloblina, V.V. Okrepilov, S.V. Razvorotneva, S.I. Rybalchenko,    2. THE THIRD SECTOR DYNAMICS: PROGRESS OF VOLUNTEERING, CHARITY AND
A.E. Tkachenko, L.A. Shafirov, A.Y. Shutov, as well as the head of the FSU “Office                INFRASTRUCTURE FOR NPO SUPPORT                                                      54
of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation” P.V. Andreev, Professor in
                                                                                              		Development of volunteering and promotion of patriotic
the Department of Philosophy at M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University
                                                                                                     education as tasks of civil society                                               56
F.Y. Albakova, Associate Professor at the Institute of Civil Service and
Management in the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and                        		Measures to develop charity and increase credibility in non-profit organizations      61
Public Administration O.V. Koroteeva, Director of the Institute for Socio-Economic            		Non-profit sector as a new branch of socially responsible economy                     66
Studies of Population of the Russian Academy of Sciences V.V. Lokosov, Research               		Government support of non-profit sector                                               76
Director of the Public Opinion Fund E.S. Petrenko, Professor in the Department of
                                                                                              3. SOLVING SOCIAL PROBLEMS WITHIN NATIONAL PROJECTS: CIVIL SOCIETY
Philosophy at M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University G.M. Ponomareva.
                                                                                                  PERSPECTIVE		                                                                        80
The report was approved for publication by a decision of the plenary session of               		Challenges of social policy                                                           83
the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation on December 9, 2019.                              		Ecology and quality of living environment                                             86
                                                                                              		Demography needs breakthrough solutions                                               92
Editors: T.G. Nasriddinov, T.S. Ilarionova, G.N. Bibikov, A.I. Kudryavtsev, F.V. Nitochkin,
A.K. Nozadze, A.D. Tretyakov, A.M. Khryastunova, with the assistance of V.A. Vanin,           		Health of the nation: contribution of social initiatives                              96
P.I. Zolotov, E.G. Orlova, V.I. Orlov, O.G. Prosypkin, A.M. Severinchik, G.A. Seiranyan,      		How ensure accessibility and quality of healthcare                                   100
E.V. Falevich, A.S. Yukhno.                                                                   		Accessible environment for everyone — imperative                                     102
                                                                                              		Care for those in need: improvement of the PBS system                                105
Photo materials: press service of the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation, Stock
Photos Lori and Shutterstock.                                                                 		Where we will live: housing and comfortable urban environment                         107
                                                                                              		Public control of spatial development: the National Program for the Far East         112
Layout, pattern, pictures — FID “DELOVOY EXPRESS”.                                            		Public activity and development of rural territories                                 114
                                                                                              		Intellectual heritage for future generations: development of education and science   117
                                                                                              		Cultural sphere in focus of civil society                                             123
© Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation, 2019.                                              4. P
                                                                                                  UBLIC DIPLOMACY SPHERE: RUSSIA’S SOFT POWER                                        126
                                                                                              CONCLUSION		                                                                            136
                                                                                              FOOTNOTES		                                                                             138
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
Introduction
The Annual Report on the state of civil         discussions strongly reflect the current
society reflects the results of discussions     state of civil society, estimate the most
and expert work of members of the               acute social problems, and ways to solve
current composition of the Civic Chamber.       them.
Considering that the Civic Chamber is a
collective public body, composed of 168         “Community” forums held annually by the
members working on equal terms, with            Civic Chamber have proven themselves to be
their own experience in public activities       one of the leading sites for discussing such
and understanding of the tasks in the           problems, as well as the most important
development of civil society, various           matters of national socio-economic
matters and positions are often viewed          development. The main participants in
differently or even oppositely.                 forums are representatives of non-profit
                                                organizations, civic chambers and councils,    {   monitoring of regional legislation that    its promotion would have been much
The Civic Chamber, as the central institution   experts, and representatives of federal            determines the formation of procedures     more difficult without the active, dynamic
of organized national society is eager to       and regional authorities. In 2019, forums          and principles of organizing activities    contribution to the discussion by the
give a quick response to the current public     were held in the North Caucasus, Far East,         of public councils in government bodies    projects’ authors, i.e. winners of the annual
agenda, and conduct long-term systemic          North-West, and Central Federal Districts.         of constituent entities of the Russian     contest for socially significant projects “My
projects in the field of public control.        Each of these forums was dedicated to              Federation, civic chambers (councils) of   project is for my country!”
                                                considerating one relevant topic in the            municipalities;
The most important component of                 development of civil society.                                                                 In addition, one cannot but note the
“feedback” with society is citizens’                                                           {   monitoring the level and quality of the    contribution to the results achieved in the
petitions. Annually the Chamber receives        The final forum in Moscow attracted more           non-profit sector’s development in         new work format successfully launched by
up to 30,000 petitions, and all of them         than 3,000 people, and made it possible to         the constituent entities of the Russian    the Chamber in 2019. What is involved here
are taken into consideration in relevant        examine the entire field of civil activities       Federation;                                is the preparation of special reports on the
commissions. In some cases, results are         and go through in detail new priorities for                                                   analysis of various problems and matters of
achieved immediately by sending a request       a dialog between society, government, and      {   search for new mechanisms to support       social and economic policies: “Ten years of
to the authority and indicating the level of    business in 2020:                                  socially significant initiatives and       activity by public monitoring commissions
public attention to the problem, in others                                                         projects within corporate programs of      in the constituent entities of the Russian
it’s necessary to carry out additional          {   public control of the implementation of        social responsibility;                     Federation”;1 “Demography-2024: how to
monitoring and discussions.                         national projects and programs;                                                           ensure sustainable natural growth in the
                                                                                               {   improvement of the procedure for           population of the Russian Federation”; 2
Public hearings on the country’s most           {   improvement of legislation and law             forming and ensuring public monitoring     “Participation of NPOs in the implementation
significant matters and expertise of the            enforcement practice in the field of           commissions in places of detention.        of social services”;3 “‘Russian breakthrough’
most important bills held by the Chamber            regulating non-profit organizations;                                                      and the tasks of civil society”;4 “Family policy:
are practical and action-oriented. Such                                                        The listed field of works was discussed and    support measures as viewed by families”;5
public events, being a form of public                                                          supported at a meeting of members of the       “How to save the village: employment
control by law, are aimed at preparing          {   breaking down administrative and           Civic Chamber and civil society activists      issues”.6
                                                    regulatory barriers for socially-
recommendations for the responsible                                                            with the First Deputy Chief of Staff of the
                                                    oriented NPOs to participate in socially
authorities; and a systematic approach of           useful activities;                         Presidential Executive Office S.V. Kirienko,   Materials for special reports and public
issues at the legislative or law enforcement                                                   held on November 1; the final day of the       discussions at the Civic Chamber, or during
level. A systematic solution is always                                                         “Community” forum in Moscow.                   field sessions and “Community” forums,
the result of efforts of many people and        {   improving the procedure for conducting                                                    monitoring, expert surveys, and public
organizations, and painstaking work with            public discussions and public hearings     It should be noted that the formation of       expertise constitute the problematic basis
regulatory documents. The results of these          in implementing urban planning;            an expert position on these issues and         of this Annual Report.

4                                                                                                                                                                                            5
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
01
#INSTITUTIONS OF
PUBLIC CONTROL
AND FORMATION
OF THE PEOPLE’S
AGENDA

                   7
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
The main task in the development of public             This work has been substantially built              The number of petitions received by the Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation
 control is to increase the transparency of             up in several directions: work with                 in terms of federal districts (relative population of districts), per 100,000
 the decision-making process by officials,              citizens’ petitions, activization of regional
 strengthen feedback between state and                  civic chambers and public councils,                   17
 municipal authorities and the population,              methodological assistance of PMCs, and
                                                                                                                             13              12
 and, as a result, increase the level of                public expertise of the most important
 public credibility in the state in general.            legislative initiatives.
                                                                                                                                                             9            9            9            9

                                                                                                                                                                                                                 4

 #Citizens’ petitions
 as a tool to                                                                                               Central
                                                                                                            Federal
                                                                                                                          Siberian
                                                                                                                          Federal
                                                                                                                                          Southern
                                                                                                                                           Federal
                                                                                                                                                       Northwestern
                                                                                                                                                         Federal
                                                                                                                                                                        Volga
                                                                                                                                                                       Federal
                                                                                                                                                                                     Ural
                                                                                                                                                                                    Federal
                                                                                                                                                                                                  North
                                                                                                                                                                                                Caucasus
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Far Eastern
                                                                                                                                                                                                              Federal

 understand the
                                                                                                            District      District         District       District     District     District     Federal      District
                                                                                                                                                                                                 District

 “people’s agenda”
                                                                                                            Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation

                                                                                                            The main portion of petitions concerns the                governments, , and supervisory and control
                                                                                                            judicial and law enforcement system, social               organizations. As a whole a series of cases
                                                                                                            sphere, and housing and communal services.                have achieved results.
 In 2019 (as of December 1, 2019), the Civic            The Central Federal District (CFD) remains          Matters of housing and communal services
 Chamber of the Russian Federation received             the leader in the number of petitions.              are traditionally the most frequently topic               For example, in March, the Civic Chamber
 17,042 citizens’ petitions. The source of              In absolute terms, 6,636 requests were              come across in citizens’ petitions. Hundreds              received a collective petition signed by more
 petitions is via both the Russian Post and             received from this district. The Far Eastern        of petitions are sent annually to the state               than 4,500 residents of the city of Pokrov and
 other channels: through the personal                   Federal District is where the least number          authorities in constituent entities, local self-          the Petushinsky district in the Vladimir Region,
 reception of citizens in the Chamber’s                 of petitions come from.
 building, via a special form for electronic
 petitions on the Chamber’s website — oprf.                                                                 Topics of citizens’ petitions received by the Civic Chamber of Russia, %
 ru, and through the hotline (call center).

 The number of petitions received by the Civic Chamber
                                                                                                                               11                                         State, society and politics
 of the Russian Federation, in terms of federal districts                                                                                         20
6,636 (39%)
                                                                                                                                                                         Social
                                                                                                                                                                        	        sphere

                                                                                                                                                                          Economy
                                                                                                                   30
            2,551 (15%) 2,295 (14%)
                                    2,022 (12%)                                                                                                         26               National
                                                                                                                                                                        	          defense, security and law
                                                        1,205 (7%) 1,051 (6%)       855 (5%) 308 (2%)
                                                                                                                                                                          Housing and communal services
                                                                                                                                     13
 Central        Volga        Siberian       Southern    Northwestern Ural Federal     North   Far Eastern
 Federal       Federal       Federal         Federal      Federal      District     Caucasus    Federal
 District      District      District        District      District                  Federal    District
                                                                                     District

 Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation                                                        Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation

 8                                                                                                                                                                                                                   9
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
Gurtskaya, resulted in two administrative       conditions for living and educating children
                                                                                                     cases against the airline under two articles:   in the family were created. After an address
                                                                                                     “Sale of goods, performance of work or          by the Chamber to the governor of Karelia,
                                                                                                     provision of services in the absence of         the situation became highly publicized. In
                                                                                                     established information” and “Deception         May 2019, the court quashed the restriction
                                                                                                     of consumers” of the Administrative Code        and immediately returned the children
                                                                                                     of the Russian Federation.                      back home.

                                                                                                     For several months, members of the Civic        Working with citizens’ petitions is a high
                                                                                                     Chamber of the Russian Federation dealt         priority and will continue. New formats are
                                                                                                     with a problem in the city of Kostomuksha       being developed. The practice of having
                                                                                                     in the Republic of Karelia, where, based on     a “zero day” before each “Community”
                                                                                                     a lawsuit by the city administration, a court   forum has proven itself — members of the
                                                                                                     decided to limit the parental rights of a       Chamber, arriving for the forum, conduct
                                                                                                     family with multiple children; six children     excursions according to citizens’ petition
                                                                                                     were taken away from their parents. The suit    from that region, helping to resolve local
                                                                                                     against the family included inadequate living   issues. Methodological work with regional
                                                                                                     conditions, lack of sleeping and working        chambers to organize work with citizens’
                                                                                                     places for lessons, etc., while the necessary   petition is being conducted.

who were protesting against a project to build     project’s implementation until a mutually
a section of the Moscow-Kazan high-speed           acceptable solution has been reached is
railway through a residential development          under consideration.8
of the city of Pokrov. The results of the audit
carried out by members of the Chamber              Members of the Civic Chamber often have
were sent to the President of the Russian          to deal with the level of competence and
Federation V.V. Putin with a request to give an    the negligence of local self-governments
order to construct the route of the highway        functionaries. For example, a citizen living
without affecting the existing populated           in the city of Kovrov, Vladimir Region, turned
areas. At present a decision has been taken        to the Civic Chamber hotline on issues
to halt the highway’s construction.7               related to the activities of medical and social
                                                   examination institutions. The MSA bureau
Another collective petition from the city of       requested control documents for his case at
Pokrov, contained a protest against a capital      the behest of the Chamber. After that, the
repair of the Volga federal highway M-7            local MSA suddenly revised its own decision
within the city. According to the capital repair   and changed the disability group from
project, the road passing through the city         second to first. In another case, an airline
and its historic center has been upgraded          ordered a single mother of two disabled
to a highway and practically divides the city      children to buy 13 tickets to transport them
into two isolated sections. Based on the           after an operation from the city of Kurgan
results of a field meeting held in the city        back home via a flight through Moscow.
of Pokrov, and a meeting that followed at          An inspection conducted at the request of
Rosavtodor, the possibility of rejecting the       a member of the Civic Chamber, Diana

10                                                                                                                                                                                             11
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
#Regional civic                                                                                 The total number of members of regional
                                                                                                civic chambers exceeds 3,500. The activities
                                                                                                                                                        Civic chambers cooperate with the full
                                                                                                                                                        range of non-profit organizations —

chambers as
                                                                                                of most chambers are organized within the               veteran, youth, trade unions, educational
                                                                                                framework of relevant commissions. To                   and environmental, societies for the
                                                                                                date, 83 civic chambers in the constituent              protection of historical and cultural

public-state
                                                                                                entities of the Russian Federation have 646             monuments, but analysis shows that non-
                                                                                                commissions acting in various areas. As a               official civic initiatives still lack proper
                                                                                                rule, the main commissions deal with social             support. According to a Civic Chamber

dialog sites                                                                                    issues, e.g. healthcare, education, housing
                                                                                                and public utilities, demography, public
                                                                                                control, etc. The name of the commissions
                                                                                                                                                        survey during the “Community” forum,11
                                                                                                                                                        the number of NPO employees and civil
                                                                                                                                                        society activists engaged in the work of
                                                                                                reflects regional specifics. For example,               civic chambers is growing annually, but up
                                                                                                the Civic Chamber of Moscow has a                       to half of the representatives of the third
                                                                                                commission on “Smart City” technology.                  sector do not participate in their activities.
In regions civic chambers are first and         civic chambers were created in all regions      The civic chambers of the Khanty-Mansiysk               Hence, we need to improve feedback
foremost sites for public dialogue. According   of Russia to protect the rights and freedoms,   Autonomous District — Yugra, the Yamal-                 channels and support mechanisms here.
to Federal Law No. 183-FZ from June 23, 2016    to concern the needs and interests of           Nenets Autonomous District and the
“On General Principles of Organization and      citizens and non-profit organizations in        Krasnoyarsk Territory, have commissions                 Approximately half of the survey’s
Activity of Civic Chambers of the Constituent   the formation and implementation of state       that deal with matters of the indigenous                respondents during the “Community”
Entities of the Russian Federation”9 and the    policy, and to ensure public supervision of     peoples of the North.10                                 forum believe that the civic chamber
relevant laws of the constituent entities,      authorities’ activities.

                                                                                                Have you personally participated in the activities
                                                                                                of a regional Civic Chamber?

                                                                                                                                                            Yes, many times
                                                                                                                                    28%
                                                                                                                                                          Yes,
                                                                                                                                                         	      once or twice

                                                                                                                                                            No, never
                                                                                                      48%

                                                                                                                                    24%

                                                                                                Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation12

12                                                                                                                                                                                                 13
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
How do you evaluate your experience in communicating                                                    Do you think the Civic Chamber of your region carries out its functions
with a regional Civic Chamber?                                                                          as a platform for interaction between the non-profit sector,
                                                                                                        civil society activists, business, and government?

             24%                                            Mostly positive                                                                                        Mainly carries out its work
                                                                                                                    27%
                                                          Mostly
                                                         	        negative                                                                                       Doesn’t
                                                                                                                                                                 	         carry out its work

                                                            No experience                                                                         49%              Not sure
       11%

                                       65%
                                                                                                                     24%

Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation13                                                   Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation16

of their region acts as a platform for                  for by law, and the rules of the chamber have   of the Civic Chamber of the Komi Republic               across all regions of the country took
interaction between the non-profit                      not been adopted.14                             was among the leaders.17                                part in public control of the presidential
sector, civil society activists, business,                                                                                                                      election. In 2019, the practice of public
and government. The other half of the                   Meanwhile, an increase in the activity          The civic chamber of any region as a                    observation was continued and developed.
respondents believe that the chamber is                 of regional chambers is indicated by            platform for a dialogue primarily depends               The necessary amendments to legislation
not a successful platform for interaction,              monitoring data on the openness and             on the position of the members themselves,              of the constituent entities of the Russian
or they do not have a definite answer to                transparency of their websites. 15 The          but also on the resources available, and                Federation made it possible to attract
this question. In general, the potential for            most common format for reporting on             the attitude of regional governments:                   almost 40,000 watchdogs to public control
regional civic chambers as institutions to              the activities of civic chambers is the         where governments are more engaged in                   in regional elections. At the same time,
organize civil society at the local level is            news: all 83 websites have this section.        the discussion of current problems, the                 working groups that monitored the election
quite high. At the same time, the goal for              Announcements about upcoming events             better the conditions for dialogue and the              process in the most difficult regions in
both the Federal Chamber and regional                   are published by 48 websites of regional        search for acceptable solutions.                        terms of possible violations were formed
chambers should be an assessment of                     chambers. Thirty websites have a special                                                                in close cooperation with the Presidential
their work, when the absolute majority                  section dedicated to the examination of         In this context, it is gratifying to see that           Council for Civil Society and Human Rights
of respondents recognize the chambers’                  bills, 18 websites have reports directed        in recent years the greatest achievements               and non-governmental human rights
active influence on the dynamics of public              toward the authorities. Fifteen websites        of the chambers are related to the                      organizations.
opinion and the promotion of public                     have texts of legal acts regulating the         development of public control. Back in
initiatives.                                            issues of working with citizens’ petitions.     2018, the chambers were actively involved               The second most important direction to
                                                        None of these websites have information         in the organization of public watchdogs                 enhance public control in 2018–2019 is the
Against this backdrop, it is disappointing to           on the chamber’s budget performance.            in elections. The Civic Chamber of the                  implementation of national projects and the
see the situation in Sevastopol, where the                                                              Russian Federation, together with the CEC               achievement of targets of the presidential
civic chamber did not hold a single meeting             Based on the set of criteria (functionality,    of Russia, developed a gold standard for                decree from May 7, 2018. Many regional
in 2019 due to the lack of a quorum. This               relevance, and interactivity), the monitoring   observing the enforcement of citizens’                  civic chambers created working groups
raises the question about the need to form              leaders in 2019 remain the websites of          electoral rights. And this standard was                 on public control of the implementation
a new composition of the chamber after                  the civic chambers in the Kirov, Yaroslavl,     used by public watchdogs to assess the                  of national projects as part of this work.
the dissolution of the current composition,             and Chelyabinsk Regions, as well as the         situation in specific polling stations.                 For example, the Civic Chamber of the
however, such a mechanism is not provided               Krasnodar Territory. In 2019, the website       In 2018, more than 150,000 watchdogs                    Republic of Khakassia formed such­­­

14                                                                                                                                                                                                      15
STATE OF THE CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION - REPORT FOR 2019 - www.oprf.ru
resolving the problems of defrauded home        Associations”. Today, this new legislation
                                                                                               buyers and performs public control of           allows public organizations to receive
                                                                                               housing construction.21                         financial resources even prior to the start of a
                                                                                                                                               project. The proposals by the St. Petersburg
                                                                                               The Ulyanovsk Region has a broad network        Civic Chamber were also included in “The
                                                                                               of municipal councils on public control         Plan for the Implementation of the Strategy
                                                                                               in the field of medicinal supply, road          of Action for Women” and in “The Program
                                                                                               maintenance, the availability and condition     for Improving Comprehensive Medical and
                                                                                               of sports facilities, and the availability of   Social Assistance to Elderly Citizens”.22
                                                                                               medical and cultural facilities under the
                                                                                               program “Accessible Environment”. More          The results of monitoring made by the
                                                                                               than 2,500 people participate in the work       Civic Chamber of Russia have shown that
                                                                                               of such councils. Launched in 2014, the         10 regional civic chambers have been
                                                                                               practice of hearing reports by members of       vested with the right to make legislative
                                                                                               the Government of the Ulyanovsk Region          initiatives. 23 The Civic Chamber of the
                                                                                               on their activities and the activities of       Kaliningrad Region actively implements
                                                                                               subordinate institutions successfully           this opportunity. In particular, such an
                                                                                               distinguished itself. Public activists have     initiative helped Kaliningrad Region law No.
                                                                                               the opportunity to communicate directly         304 from July 1, 2019 “On Public Councils
                                                                                               with the heads of ministries; questions and     under the Government of the Kaliningrad
                                                                                               topics for discussion are then referred to      Region” to be adopted.24 In 2019, the Civic
                                                                                               the authorities.                                Chamber of the Kursk Region prepared a
                                                                                                                                               regional bill “On Patrons and Patronage
                                                                                               In the Sakhalin Region, regional and            Activities”. This bill is included in the rule-
                                                                                               municipal civic chambers took part in the       making plan of the Kursk Regional Duma.25
a group, which in addition to members of       public controllers. 20 The Civic Chamber        implementation of the project “Special          The experience of granting the legislative
the regional chamber, includes chairmen        of the Russian Federation, together with        Child’s Opportunities Map”. More than           initiative to the subjects of public control
of municipal civic chambers and public         colleagues from the regions, summarize          1,500 people took part in a survey on health    seems to be an important area for expert
councils under executive authorities.          best practices in this area and facilitate      problems in the region. It helped to identify   study at a platfrom of the Federal Civic
Following the studying of the passports of     their spread.                                   the main issues: staffing and health            Chamber and within the framework of the
regional projects, “road maps” for public                                                      services accessibility (some services can       “Community” forum in 2020.
monitoring were compiled. The head of          The specific agenda of public control in the    be given only in medical institutions located
the republic and the heads of regional         regions is diverse. However, as a rule, it      in the central regions of Russia or abroad,     The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation
ministries took part in a plenary meeting of   focuses on people’s everyday problems.          which, in turn, leads to large and sometimes    is not the governing body for the regional
the republican Civic Chamber in September      For example, after the intervention of          enormous financial costs).                      chambers. While at the same time, the
2019.18 The Civic Chamber of the Volgograd     the St. Petersburg Civic Chamber, it was                                                        Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation
Region implemented a working group             possible to help home buyers who asked          In St. Petersburg, the attention of the Civic   does provide methodological support for
to supervise the execution of the May          public activists to monitor the construction    Chamber helped to speed up the process          regional civic chambers. Such support is
Decrees; members of the Chamber are            of several residential complexes and            of combining social and medical services.       aimed at consolidating the principles of
also members of the project committees         verify the quality of the work being carried    Public activists have repeatedly reported       self-government, independence, openness,
involved in the implementation of national     out at the facilities. Thanks to the Civic      about the need not only for one-time, but       and transparency in their everyday
projects in the region.19 The Civic Chamber    Chamber defrauded home buyers were              comprehensive and long-term assistance          activities. Despite the representatives of all
of the Vologda Region developed a system       able to sit down at the negotiating table for   to citizens, especially the elderly. On July    regional chambers having the opportunity
of public control for the national project     the first time and ask questions. Based on      1, the city opened a Social Service Center      to interact at plenary meetings of the
“Safe and High-Quality Roads” to monitor       the consultations, participants in shared       and a social neighborhood physician. The        Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation,
the formation and use of road funds at all     construction received assurances that it        new structure keeps records of citizens         in order to ensure constant interregional
levels. Joint work with the Department of      planned to complete the construction and        who need various types of social and            interaction on public control, the Council of
Public Road Administration and Transport       put into operation 21 “problem” residential     medical assistance. The St. Petersburg Civic    Civic Chambers of the constituent entities
of the Government of the Vologda Region        buildings. The Civic Chamber of the             Chamber also initiated amendments to the        of the Russian Federation coordinates the
resulted in a photo illustrated memo for       Republic of Tatarstan is also involved in       Law “On Grants of St. Petersburg for Public     activities of regional chambers in terms

16                                                                                                                                                                                          17
of implementing new prioritized initiatives    attended by 49 leaders of public activists         Have you personally participated in municipal (city or district)
and interregional projects, and facilitates    from different regions of the country, some        civic chamber events?
the interchange of experience and best         of whom were selected at previous sessions
practices. The monitoring conducted            of the Civic Chamber’s University, the rest
by the Council shows that regional civic       passed competitive selection. As part of the
chambers still have many organizational        project, young leaders are taught to find
problems. Often such problems include          resources through which social change can
the weak activity of the chambers, lack of     be launched in the regions.                                                                                    Yes, many times
                                                                                                                                      23%
competencies for establishing constructive
interaction with the authorities, the media,   The experience of 2019 showed that in                                                                        Yes,
                                                                                                                                                           	      once or twice
NPOs, and organization of activities on        a number of socially significant conflict
public control. These problems can be          situations at the local level, the role of                                                                     No, never
solved with more coordination between          civic chambers as an organized institution                50%
the chambers for an intensive exchange of      of civic dialog was not quite in line with
positive experiences.                          their potential. In the scheme of things,
                                               we can talk about the shortcomings of the                                                 27%
As a response to this problem, in November     mechanism to form civic chambers, which
2019, members of regional civic chambers       often make them dependent on the regional
could attend a series of training seminars     political situation. In light of this, the Civic
held as part of the project “The Civic         Chamber of the Russian Federation is
Chamber’s University”. The module was          discussing legislative changes aimed at

                                                                                                  Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation26

                                                                                                  improving the mechanisms to form civic                  from 5 to 10 million rubles, and 20 have
                                                                                                  chambers.                                               from 1 to 5 million rubles. The Budget
                                                                                                                                                          Law of other constituent entities has no
                                                                                                  As has been repeatedly highlighted,                     separate budget line for the activities
                                                                                                  the implementation of the principles on                 of the Civic Chamber, and funds may be
                                                                                                  which the chambers’ activities shall be                 received from the budgets of regional
                                                                                                  based is currently hindered by legislative              ministries and departments, for example
                                                                                                  gaps in establishing a minimum level of                 from a ministry of labor and social security.
                                                                                                  financial support for their activities. The             The perennial lack of funding for ongoing
                                                                                                  issue of financial support often mitigates              work significantly reduces the quality of
                                                                                                  the high-quality organization of current                work in public control, and independence
                                                                                                  work, for example preparation of events,                in discussing various problems. The
                                                                                                  materials for public expertise reviews,                 Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation
                                                                                                  results of public control, etc. At present,             suggests that it is necessary to add a rule
                                                                                                  44 regional budget laws have a separate                 in regional legislation on the mandatory
                                                                                                  line for ensuring the activities of the Civic           financing of the current activities of civic
                                                                                                  Chamber. Each constituent entity decides                chambers.
                                                                                                  on the issue of ensuring the activities of
                                                                                                  the civic chamber based on its capabilities;            Municipalities in many regions have
                                                                                                  therefore, the level of financial support for           created civic chambers. According
                                                                                                  the chambers’ activities varies significantly:          to a survey conducted as part of the
                                                                                                  8 chambers have financing exceeding 10                  “Community” forum, nearly half of its
                                                                                                  million rubles per year, another 10 have                participants already have experience of

18                                                                                                                                                                                                  19
#Public councils:
                                                                                               new role in the work
                                                                                               of authorities
                                                                                               Public councils are permanently acting          Russian Federation”, public councils
                                                                                               consultative and advisory bodies of public      under federal executive bodies are
                                                                                               control under federal executive bodies.         formed on a competitive basis. 27 In
                                                                                               The Public Council is intended to ensure        recent years the principles of autonomy
                                                                                               that the needs and interests, and the           and independence of public councils
                                                                                               rights and freedoms of citizens and public      from public authorities have become
                                                                                               associations are protected and taken            a universally recognized norm. These
                                                                                               into account during the implementation          criteria were developed with the
                                                                                               of state policy, as well as to monitor the      participation of the Civic Chamber of the
                                                                                               activities of federal bodies; for example, to   Russian Federation, and were reflected
                                                                                               consider bills, participate in monitoring of    in a resolution of the Government of
                                                                                               the quality of public services, evaluate the    the Russian Federation adopted in June
                                                                                               effectiveness of public procurement, etc.       2019. 28 The organizer of competitions
interacting with municipal civic chambers.     there are no municipal civic chambers at                                                        to fill the vacancy in public councils
The Moscow Region has civic chambers in        all. Besides civic chambers and councils,       According to the Federal Law “On the            is the Civic Chamber of the Russian
all municipalities, and their activities are   many regions have other advisory bodies of      Foundations of Public Control in the            Federation.
coordinated by the Civic Chamber of the        social activists under the head of the region
Moscow Region. The Irkutsk Region has 14       or mayor. And at the same time, the status
municipal civic chambers (there are a total    of some public structures under regional
of 43 municipalities in the region). Some      authorities (councils on interacting with
regions have such a network of public          business entities and expert councils) is
control at the local level.                    often not defined.

At the final “Community” forum in Moscow,      It is obvious that at the legislative level,
a scheme where operating both branch and       the activities of municipal civic chambers
rural public councils was introduced using     are not sufficiently regulated. And in fact,
the Ivanovo district of the Amur Region as     they are only mentioned in the Federal law
an example. Out of a total population of       on public control. This situation creates an
23,000 people in the district, more than       overlap regarding powers and jurisdiction
200 residents are members of various           of these institutions. The Civic Chamber
public councils.                               of the Russian Federation plans to launch
                                               an expert discussion on the legislative
At the same time, in a number of the           regulation of the activities of municipal
Russian Federation’s constituent entities      civic chambers (councils).

20                                                                                                                                                                                     21
51                                        31
                                                                                            Such instances are out there. The Public           budget, and spotted the non-execution of
                                                                                            Council under the Ministry of Natural              powers by responsible structures and the
                                                                                            Resources of Russia recorded the ineffective       misallocation of funds. The Public Council
                                                                                            implementation of the federal target               under the Ministry of Natural Resources of
                    p
                     ublic                                 p
                                                             ublic                         program “Lake Baikal Protection”. It is            Russia were provided with documents on
                    councils                                councils                        extremely difficult to implement the federal       the proposed changes in the federal target
      formed                                   formed during the current                    target program’s key event - the elimination       program to harmonize financial assistance
                                                                                            of the negative impact of waste accumulated        to the region. Members of the Public Council
                                               composition of the Civic

     1,287 people
                                                                                            by the Baikal Pulp and Paper Mill. In              as part of a Civic Chamber delegation visited
                                               Chamber
                                                                                            2018, the Audit Chamber of the Russian             the city of Baikalsk to assess the practicality
                                               (since June 2017)                            Federation conducted an audit that showed          of the amendments. Public activists were
      in councils                                                                           an inefficient spending of funds, in particular,   able to monitor the progress of the project
                                                                                            about 4 billion rubles were diverted from the      to eliminate waste from the BPPM on the

     15 councils                               18 of them
     is checking candidate                      operate according to a new Activity
     profiles                                   Standard for public councils                  PUBLIC EXPERTISE
                                                                                              Federal Target Program “Baikal Lake Protection” 2012-2020

     replaced outgoing
     members                                   1 e arlier formed                                                                                               TAKEN UNDER

          21 councils
                                                                                                                                                                   PUBLIC
                                                  council
                                                                                                                                                                  CONTROL
     in                                        totally “reset”

The Civic Chamber establishes the basic        public councils have held competitions
requirements for candidates; candidates        to replace outgoing members, and one
for the post of chairman of a public council   previously formed council was totally
are nominated by the Civic Chamber of the      “reset”.
Russian Federation. The term of office for
the composition of public councils may not     Members of public councils discuss                                 NO TECHNOLOGIES FOUND
exceed 3 years from the day of the first in-   departments’ current initiatives, consider
person meeting of the composition of the       socially significant bills, and supervise
public council. Today, there are 51 public     their implementation. They also monitor
councils formed under federal executive        the quality of public services. Members
bodies comprised of 1,287 people. During       of public councils have significant                 billion
the work of the current composition of         powers and expert competencies that                 rubles
the Civic Chamber (since June 2017),           allow them to influence the agenda of              out of budget
31 public councils were formed, 18 of          departments, and most importantly,                 and stay idle
them work according to a new Activity          they have the opportunity to know all the
Standard for public councils adopted in        ropes of the department, without diving
                                                                                             PUBLIC COUNCIL UNDER THE MINISTRY OF NATURAL
2018. The submission of documents has          into the bureaucratic routine; and that
been closed in 15 councils and the stage       is why councils can be quite useful for       RESOURCES OF RUSSIA
of verifying candidate profiles is currently   both government departments and civil         revealed ineffective expenditure of funds in terms
underway. And also, since June 2017, 21        society.                                      of the BPPM and offered another concept

22                                                                                                                                                                                         23
are moderated by government officials.
Do you know about the activities of public councils under executive                                                                       Often the councils are slow in reacting to
bodies in your region?                                                                                                                    social injustices appearing in the media,
                                                                                                                                          the legitimate claims of our citizens to
                                                                                                                                          the activities of state institutions, which
                                                                                                                                          has obvious consequences on the level of
                   12%                                                                                                                    credibility and interest in them on the part of
                                                         I have
                                                        	     experience of working                                                      the population. Sometimes public councils
                                                         with public councils                                                             have heated discussions, but their results
                                       37%                                                                                                remain unknown to the media and the public.
                                                         Received
                                                        	          information on the
                                                         activities of public councils                                                    One of the most important tasks of
       27%                                                                                                                                public councils in the coming years will
                                                         I heard
                                                        	      something about these                                                     be to discuss and publicly monitor the
                                                         councils                                                                         implementation of national projects. Public
                                                                                                                                          councils shall become a platform for
                                                         Never heard about them                                                           open and heated discussions on national
                                                                                                                                          projects: If there is any doubt that the
                         24%                                                                                                              stated goals will be completed on time, and
                                                                                                                                          the goals themselves need to be adjusted,
                                                                                         ground; the body implementing the project        this should be spoken about directly. This
                                                                                         is “Rosgeologiya”. During this event, it         is an important format for civil society
Source: The Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation29                                    became clear that the start of the project had   to participate in the implementation of
                                                                                         been delayed due to a lack of technological      national projects.
                                                                                         solutions. The Public Council gave specific
                                                                                         proposals for changing this situation.30 In      Regions, along with civic chambers, are
                                                                                         some instances, if the issue is related to a     forming public councils under executive
                                                                                         hyped up newsworthy event the media sparks       bodies, and in some cases this is already
                                                                                         lively discussions with the participation of     a large-scale network of public control.
                                                                                         media personalities. This was the case,          Technically, this work involves tens of
                                                                                         when there was a discussion about a              thousands of social activists throughout
                                                                                         proposal by the Public Council under the         the country. Most respondents of a survey,
                                                                                         Ministry of Natural Resources of Russia on       conducted during the “Community” forums,
                                                                                         the introduction of the subject “Ecology for     already have experience in interacting
                                                                                         Sustainable Development”. This topic was         with community councils in the regions or
                                                                                         covered in 234 messages in the media, 2          receive information about their activities.
                                                                                         clips on TV channels, and 726 messages on
                                                                                         social networks.                                 In some state institutions, the activities
                                                                                                                                          of the capital and regional public councils
                                                                                         Such a proactive approach is inculcated          are coordinated. For instance, members
                                                                                         slowly and is rather an exception than a         of public councils under the Federal Anti-
                                                                                         tendency; today the potential of public          Monopoly Service hold regular online
                                                                                         councils is far from being fully realized.       meetings, as well as joint meetings in
                                                                                         A public council can also discuss the            Moscow. In addition to interregional
                                                                                         organization’s HR policy, including              interaction assisted by public councils,
                                                                                         explicitly addressing the resignation of any     interinstitutional interaction can also be
                                                                                         official, but so far such precedents have        organized. For this purpose, a Coordination
                                                                                         yet to happen. Public councils often form        Council under the Civic Chamber on the
                                                                                         an agenda based solely on departmental           environmental safety of Russian citizens
                                                                                         topics. There are public councils that           was created.

24                                                                                                                                                                                    25
An interesting initiative to form an
Assembly of regional public councils under
                                                 entities (Voronezh, Amur, Tambov, and
                                                 Chelyabinsk Regions) have regional               #Civil society
                                                                                                  activists in the field
relevant authorities was implemented by          chambers that may participate in the
the Ministry of Construction of Russia.          formation of public councils.
As a result an expanded public council

                                                                                                  of public control
that helps the federal institution receive       In July 2019, the Kaliningrad Region
feedback from the regions appeared.31 The        adopted the Law “On Public Councils
first in-person meeting of the Assembly of       Under State Authorities”. This legal act
Regional Public Councils in the areas of         regulates the activities of public councils,
construction and housing and communal            the composition of which will now be
services were held in July 2019 at the Civic     in the hands of the Kaliningrad Region
Chamber of the Russian Federation. The           Civic Chamber, rather than of specialized        The year 2019 marks five years since the     Some regions of the country have a unified
key topic of the meeting was the national        ministries. Such a decision came from the        entry into force of Federal Law No. 212-     system of public control with clear rules
project “Housing and Urban Environment”          local legislative body for the first time, and   FZ “On the Basics of Public Control in       of the game and the ability to quickly and
and the contribution of public councils to its   in some way it is an unexpected decision         the Russian Federation”. Despite the law     effectively join in the work. For example,
implementation.                                  that creates a precedent, which could set        clearly defining the structure of subjects   active public control was created in the
                                                 an example for other regions.33 Moreover,        of public control, the actual quality of     housing and communal services system,
The dependence of public councils on             the Kirov Region adopted amendments              its enforcement depends on the activity      initiated by the Civic Chamber of the Russian
regional authorities is gradually decreasing;    to the legislation, according to which           and competence of ordinary members in        Federation. Non-profit organizations served
the practice of appointing civil servants        the regional Civic Chamber forms 2/3 of          local public control, namely housing and     as a basis for creating resource centers for
to public councils is almost history. For        public councils under regional executive         environmental inspectors, members of         active housing owners, and the national
example, in 2014, the Civic Chamber of           authorities, coordinates the final               civic chambers and councils, members of      project “Housing and Communal Services
the Stavropol Territory monitored the civic      composition of public councils that should       public monitoring commissions, leaders of    Control” is a methodological center for
councils of municipalities. At that time         provide the chamber with the results of          non-profit organizations, etc.               regional NPOs. Public inspectors monitor
62% of the councils were led by heads of         their activities.
administrations or municipalities or their
deputies; the councils included state            In some cases, the streamlining of
officials from various levels. Today, such       the activities of public councils under
tendencies have completely vanished.32           regional executive bodies is carried out
                                                 on an institutional basis. For instance,
The activities of public councils in the         the system of public councils under the
regions are weakly structured and largely        territorial bodies of the Federal Anti-
depend on the position of local authorities      Monopoly Service is conducted with the
and their desire to hear the voice of civil      participation of regional civic chambers
society. To evaluate the contribution of these   and with the coordinated support of the
civil society institutions to the development    Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation.
of regions, solving local problems is quite
difficult due to a few vivid examples of         Most laws in the regions still do not
such councils’ activities. The activities of     indicate powers of civic chambers to
public councils are regulated by regional        form public councils under territorial
legislation, which usually assigns them a        executive bodies. The participation of civic
role in the field of public control. If at the   chambers in the composition of public
federal level the role of the Civic Chamber      councils is an important tool for ensuring
in the formation of the composition and          the independence and productive work of
coordination of the activities of public         these institutions. To resolve this issue, it
councils under federal executive bodies is       is necessary to amend regional laws on
clearly provided in normative acts, then the     public control, which enable regional civic
regions do not have such certainties. Some       chambers to participate in the formation
of the Russian Federation’s constituent          of public councils.

26                                                                                                                                                                                       27
for this. The main activities in monitoring        Children’s Hospice, budgetary federal
                                                the status of monuments and grave sites are        and regional funding for palliative care
                                                carried out by public organizations.34 The         for children was set. At the federal
                                                Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation,           level, 4.6 billion rubles were allocated,
                                                regional chambers, together with search            and each region should add 20% to this
                                                NPOs, participated in the development of           money and create a regional development
                                                the federal target program “Creation and           program for this sector. The Children’s
                                                Restoration of Military Memorial Objects in        Rights Commissioner for the President
                                                2019–2024”.35 The relevance of the program         of the Russian Federation, Anna
                                                was confirmed by a public inspection of            Kuznetsova, together with the chairman
                                                military grave sites in the Leninsky district of   of the Commission of the Civic Chamber
                                                the Republic of Crimea and the city of Kerch,      of the Russian Federation on Charity,
                                                which did not always demonstrate a decent          Civic Education and Social Responsibility,
                                                level of preservation and improvement,             Alexander Tkachenko, launched the
                                                as well as the lack of passports for state         monitoring of the organization of palliative
                                                registration of military grave sites in the        care for children in the regions. 38 On
                                                “Memorial” unified database.                       August 29, the first children’s hospice was
                                                                                                   opened in the Moscow Region with the
                                                A monitoring system concerning                     participation of Alexander Tkachenko in the
                                                orphanages is being developed to bring             city of Domodedovo.39
                                                their activities in line with Decree No. 481 of
                                                the Government of the Russian Federation           One of the most important forms of public
                                                from May 24, 2014, which acts as the basis         control is an independent assessment              information about the quality of the
the activities of homeowners associations,      for reform in this sphere. According to data       of the quality of services provided by            conditions for the provision of services by
the quality of capital repairs, and collect     for 2018, the total number of individuals          cultural, social care, health and educational     organizations is facing problems. In light of
the opinion of residents about the quality      in orphanages is about 71,500 children.            organizations. According to Federal Law           this, it is necessary to consider the scope
of improvement of the outdoor space. A          Almost 29,000 of them are children placed          No. 392-FZ dated December 5, 2017, public         of powers of the Civic Chamber and civic
successful example is the experience of the     in these institutions by parents or other          councils for an independent assessment            chambers of the constituent entities of
Kirov Region where, since 2018, with the        legal representatives. At the end of the last      of the quality of social services were            the Russian Federation related to public
participation of the regional Civic Chamber,    year, the number of orphanages reached             established under the Ministry of Culture of      councils for an independent assessment
control has been established over the           more than 1,300, more than 90% of them             Russia, the Ministry of Health of Russia, the     of the quality of social services, including
formation and approval of tariffs for housing   are state-owned.36 The general task of the         Ministry of Education and Science of Russia,      participation in monitoring the results of
and communal services. The final act,           state and society is that a large number of        the Ministry of Education of Russia, and the      the assessment and following measures
based on the results of complex monitoring      children be brought up in families, preferably     Ministry of Labor of Russia. These councils       on their results.
of housing and communal service tariffs for     birth families. It is also necessary to reduce     are formed by the Civic Chamber of the
2018, it was noted that the requirements        the time spent by children in orphanages,          Russian Federation from representatives           Since January 1, 2014, bills of acts of
to limit the growth of tariffs has not been     and stimulate orphanages to organize the           of all-Russian public organizations. They         the Russian Federation’s constituent
met and residents are paying an additional      family setting for their pupils.                   assess not the quality of services themselves,    entities concerning the implementation of
comparable amount through taxes.                                                                   but the availability of conditions for their      entrepreneurial and investment activities
                                                The Civic Chamber also evaluates the               provision, i.e. openness and accessibility of     must pass a mandatory procedure on the
At present, a system of public control          provision of the services “Nannies for             information, comfortable conditions for the       assessment of regulatory impact. The
around the implementation of the Law “On        Orphans in Hospitals” according to                 provision of social services, including waiting   business community, empowered by the
Immortalizing the Memory of the Fallen          Paragraph 88 of the action plan for the            time, friendliness, politeness of employees at    rights of entrepreneurs in the regions, is
in the Defense of the Fatherland” is being      Decade of Childhood. It is necessary to            social care organizations, and accessibility of   actively involved in this activity.
developed. Today, according to the Russian      improve the legal framework and expand             services for people with disabilities.
Ministry of Defense, out of 31,078 military     the access of NPOs to the provision of social                                                        Since 2017, the Vologda Region has
graves, the preservation level of 31% of        services to children.37                            To date, the activities of these public           implemented the routine practice of
graves has been rated as “unsatisfactory”.                                                         councils are developing quite actively, but       conducting public control of road repairs.
The maintenance of grave sites is managed       This year, after a visit by the President of the   the involvement of contractors on public          The region has allocated budgetary funds
by municipalities, which often lack the funds   Russian Federation to the ­­­­St. Petersburg       contracts who collect and summarize               to launch a public control training program

28                                                                                                                                                                                             29
for municipal employees. The Kursk              procedural rights to apply to the court with       Examples of legislative regulation of citizen participation
Region opened a free resource center for        a statement in protection of the interests of      in public control
representatives of civil society and NPOs       an indefinite number of people.
working in the field of public control, where
they are provided with accounting and legal     Today, the vast majority of regions have
services for the whole year.                    adopted laws on public control, but there           Public inspectors,                              What regulates the status
                                                are no laws on public control in the largest        public experts                                  of public inspector, public expert
The development of a food quality control       constituent entities of Russia, namely              and public watchdog                             and public watchdog
system is in process. The Komi Republic         Moscow and St. Petersburg. The quality
Civic Chamber, under the framework of           of regional laws varies widely: Some acts                                                           Decree No. 403 of the Ministry of Natural
the “Days of Control”, together with the        successfully detail and develop the norms                     Public environmental inspectors       Resources of Russia dated July 12, 2017 “On
Ministry of Agriculture and the consumer        of federal legislation, which makes the law                                                         Approving the Procedure for Organizing the
market of the republic, assesses the            a working instrument. The Kirov Region,                                                             Activities of Public Environmental Inspectors”
quality of dairy products.40 The project by     the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District,
Semyon Volchek, a contestant in the Civic       and the Tyumen Region are good examples
                                                                                                                                                    Rostekhnadzor Decree No. 293 dated August
Chamber “My Project is for My Country!”,        of laws on public control. In other cases,                    Public industrial safety inspectors   2, 2017 “On Approval of the Procedure for
“Interregional System for Monitoring the        lawmakers simply reproduced the norms                                                               Attracting Public Inspectors in the Field
Safety and Quality of Food by Non-Profit        of the federal law.                                                                                 of Industrial Safety by the Federal Service
Organizations as an Institution of Civil                                                                                                            for Ecological, Technological and Nuclear
Society in the Field of Consumer Protection”    A negative practice of public control exists,                                                       Supervision and Qualification Requirements
operates in 20 regions. During the course       which has become widespread during                                                                  for These Inspectors”
of the project, they managed to significantly   inspections of business entities by public
change the attitude of the public to the        organizations according to Article 45 of the
problem of counterfeit food products and        Federal Law “On Protection of Consumer                                                              Art. 20 of Federal Law No. 498-FZ dated
                                                                                                              Public animal inspectors              December 27, 2018 “On Responsible Animals
its ingredients.                                Rights”, which, in particular, gives the right                                                      Handling and on Amending Certain Legislative
                                                to conduct independent expert examination                                                           Acts of the Russian Federation”
At the same time, many gaps remain in           of goods, works and services, to carry out
the sphere of legislative regulation and        public monitoring of compliance with the law
the organization of citizen participation in    and, if violations are discovered, transmit this                                                    Decree No. 1491 of the Government of the
public control. According to the legislation,   information to the competent authorities.                     Public inspectors and public          Russian Federation dated December 26, 2016
                                                                                                              experts in housing control            “On the Procedure for Implementing Public
individual citizens and public associations     Taking advantage of the legal illiteracy of
                                                                                                                                                    Housing Control”
are not subjects of public control, but         business owners, dishonest employees of
they have the right to participate in           public organizations conduct raids among
its implementation. In order to do so           small and medium-sized businesses for                                                               Resolution No. 491 of the Ministry of Education
they must have special knowledge and            personal gain. Similar violations exist in the                Public watchdogs during the state     and Science of Russia dated June 28, 2013 “On
                                                                                                              final certification of educational    the Approval of the Procedure for Accrediting
experience in the relevant field, as well       system of public control in places of detention.              programs                              Citizens as Public Watchdogs During the State
as be officially approved as participants                                                                                                           Final Certification of Educational Programs
in public control (public inspectors, public    Additionally, legislation does not establish                                                        of Basic General and Secondary General
experts, and public watchdogs). However,        the responsibility of subjects of public                                                            Education, the All-Russian Olympiad of School
the procedure for empowering public             control for distorted or inaccurate                                                                 Students and Other Olympiad of School
inspectors, experts, and watchdogs are          information, and the responsibility of                                                              Students”
approved not in all areas of public control.    persons who impede the implementation of
                                                public control. Further institutionalization                                                        Federal Law No. 67-FZ dated June 12, 2002
In light of this, the quality of sectoral       of public control is necessary, including                     Public election watchdogs             “On Basic Guarantees of Electoral Rights and
laws in the field of public control should      the requirements for the subjects of public                                                         the Right of Citizens of the Russian Federation
                                                                                                                                                    to Participate in a Referendum”
be improved. There are suggestions to           control in the preparation and conduct of
provide subjects of public control with the     public inspections.

30                                                                                                                                                                                                31
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