In the currently effective regulation, it is not ensured that the public guardianship authority, which acts in matters of adoption, is notified of the launching of a paternity case that concerns a certain child in each case, as Ombudsman Dr. Ákos Kozma concluded after he had inquired into a related complaint. The Commissioner requested the competent ministry to clarify the respective statutory provisions.
The person exercising executive power is entitled to act against the expression of any opinion by the employees that violates or threatens the employer’s specific interests, however, in the actual implementation, complying with the statutory regulations, the enforcement of the principles of the rule of law and the freedom of expression, as well as the observation of the appropriate formal requirements are also fundamental constitutional criteria, as was pointed out by Ombudsman Dr. Ákos Kozma after his inquiry.
A complainant objected to the police measures (identity check, frisking, mobile phone control) taken against him, in his view, because of his Roma nationality, and he also expressed his concerns about the intensified control that was used as the legal basis for such measures. He also complained that his personal data had been recorded despite the fact that the identity check was not followed by any further police measures or procedures.
At the moment, the recognition of potential suicidal behaviours in children and adolescents and the efficient prevention thereof are hindered, and the rights of children may be violated due to the lack of appropriate professional regulations and practices related to the tasks of school psychologists, who fulfil the role of “gatekeepers”, as was concluded by the Ombudsman. This is why Dr. Ákos Kozma proposed that a specific working group be set up for this purpose by the competent ministry.
The Ministry of Innovation and Technology caused an impropriety related to the right to petition and the right to fair administration of official matters when it failed to provide comprehensive information on the changes in the provisions pertaining to gas appliances, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights concluded in his report. Dr. Ákos Kozma requested the Minister of Innovation and Technology to ensure that the acting organisational units of his Ministry pay particular attention to the handling of public interest disclosures.
The current regulation on prisoners’ contacts by phone – exclusive of the extraordinary rules introduced due to the coronavirus situation –, hence especially the bail payable for possessing a device and the reference tariff rates, may cause an infringement of the fundamental right to respect for privacy and family life, Ombudsman Dr. Ákos Kozma established during his comprehensive ex-officio inquiry.
The proceeding of the school and the school district (the maintainer) concerned caused an impropriety related to the right to fair administration of official matters as well as to the right to legal remedy during the assessment of requests of leave of absence of pupils from school, the Commissioner for Fundamental Rights exposed in connection with a complaint. Dr. Ákos Kozma called attention to the fact that in epidemiological situations as in ordinary times, leave of absence due to reasonable causes must be examined on the substance, and parents must be provided adequate information on the state of the matters.
In their joint statement on World Environment Day, Commissioner for Fundamental Rights Dr Ákos Kozma and Deputy Commissioner, Ombudsman for Future Generations Dr Gyula Bándi call our attention to our responsibility for our ecosystems and remind the state institutions, as well as all the members and groups of society to protect them.
Dr. Ákos Kozma, Commissioner for Fundamental Rights and Dr. Gyula Bándi, Deputy Commissioner for the Interests of Future Generations urge changes supporting sustainable living in order to protect biological diversity. The Fundamental Law of Hungary obliges each and every Hungarian to protect the diversity of nature.
On 17 May, the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, we commemorate the fact in numerous countries of the world that it has been over three decades now that the World Health Organization (WHO) removed homosexuality from the list of mental illnesses. The ombudsman institution has always placed great emphasis on acting to protect equal human dignity, and to ensure that all people belonging to vulnerable groups can exercise their fundamental rights equally and free of discrimination.
The pandemic situation has improved as a result of the rising number of vaccinated citizens and it has also become possible to lift part of the related restrictive measures. Immunity certificates were introduced by the Government as one of the elements of this process. This card entitles those who have been vaccinated and those who have recovered from the Covid-19 infection to use certain services.
In his report, Commissioner for Fundamental Rights Dr. Ákos Kozma concluded that some progress had been made at the Kalocsa Children's Home with regard to the staff headcount, the number of qualified employees and the reduction in staff turnover compared to the Ombudsman’s previous inquiry. However, serious, concrete and systemic problems were identified in respect of the physical conditions of the institution, the operation of its branch school and some other issues, therefore the Ombudsman formulated recommendations.