In the Ombudsman's view, there are not enough qualified media teachers in schools, understanding media is not a discipline in its own right in the National Core Curriculum (NCC), the specified number of classes and the professional contents are but recommendations, handling online abuse and the dangers of the internet are not dealt with. As a first step, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights has requested the Minister of Human Capacities to commission a comprehensive study assessing and analyzing the efficiency of media education, to introduce specialized teacher training with a curriculum also covering the topic of fending off online abuse.
Following the holidays, referring to the extreme cold weather of recent days, Commissioner for Fundamental Rights László Székely pointed out that it is a moral obligation and legal duty of everyone to lend a helping hand to those who are vulnerable and in need. No one should be left without substantive assistance and a roof above their head in this cold weather. According to the Ombudsman, the winter crisis period is the touchstone of solidarity, showing whether we are capable to pay due attention to those who are in continuous danger out in the streets or in places unsuitable for dwelling.
Children of foreign nationality residing in Hungary may participate in pre-school education and, after reaching school age mandatory under Hungarian law, primary school education under the same conditions as their Hungarian peers do, pointed out László Székely in his report. In his report on the investigation conducted by him ex officio, based on media reports and alerts, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights called attention to the fact that the provisions of the Public Education Act, also regulating the education of children of foreign nationality, are not in accordance with the provisions of the sectoral acts, and their use of terms is not consistent, either.
The authorities responsible for the protection of children did not receive any information on the fact that some extremely vulnerable children in state care in Germany had been placed in foster care in Hungary. Thus the Hungarian authorities and service providers could not have taken the necessary measures even if the rights of those children, not speaking Hungarian and stuck in a foreign environment, had been infringed. In his report, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights has made a recommendation to the Minister of Human Capacities: the authorities responsible for the protection of children should be informed, at least at county level, on the placement of foreign children in Hungarian foster care.
The Commissioner for Fundamental Rights has joined the campaign of the Council for Europe for the protection of children against sexual harassment, abuse and exploitation; and he also calls for the importance of prevention. According to Ombudsman László Székely, such concealed issues and evading responsibility advise everyone - including legislators and citizens- for having task to do in the field of protection. Actions against sexual abuse of children is the most pressing and common task in child protection.
The Ombudsman received several petitions over the last year, in which parents complained that, due to the shortage of competent specialists, their children with special educational needs would not receive the care and education recommended by the education counsellor and the expert committee. In the report on his investigation, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights pointed out several anomalies and made some recommendations.
Following a recommendation by the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights and as a result of cooperation between the three competent ministries, a regulatory deficiency, related to the public workers' fundamental rights, has been eliminated with exemplary speed. The Ombudsman is confident that similarly quick results may be reached in other cases, related to the protection of other vulnerable groups, as well.
According to Commissioner for Fundamental Rights László Székely, this unprecedentedly grave situation, created by mass migration, requires an adequate, responsible solution that is in harmony with human rights standards. The Ombudsman is investigating the concrete developments in the matter and has personally conducted an on-the-spot inspection examining the circumstances. The Commissioner as the UN National Human Rights Institution and his Deputies are continuously monitoring the measures aimed at handling this humanitarian crisis situation.
The pharmacies' on-call and stand-by obligations, as well as the aspects to be taken into consideration by the competent regulatory organ should be clearly regulated by a statute instead of a ministerial decree, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights has pointed out in his report. Ombudsman László Székely has requested the competent ministry to carry out a full revision of the compensation of on-call and stand-by services.
In accordance with the initiative of Ombudsman László Székely, the problematic provisions of the relevant government decree have been repealed and new, unambiguous regulations have been adopted in connection with issuing pre-degree certificates. In the course of an earlier inquiry, launched upon a complaint submitted to his Office, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights established that the relevant government decree had overstepped its statutory authorization and, as a result, some universities set a minimum grade point average for issuing pre-degree certificates instead of issuing them upon the passing of all necessary exams.
The fact that the Burials Act's relevant provision gives a shorter list of those entitled to pay their respects at the urn containing the ashes of the deceased than that of the Civil Code infringes the requirement of legal certainty and the right of certain relatives to pay their mournful tributes. That is the reason why Ombudsman László Székely has requested the Minister of Interior to initiate the soonest possible amendment of the Act, so that–on the basis of the statement of the person compelled to arrange for the burial–not only the closest relatives, but all relatives in general could pay their respects at the urn.