Public Defender Addresses Addiction Prevention Center with Recommendation to Eliminate Discrimination

On December 29, 2022, the Public Defender of Georgia addressed the Director of the Centerfor Mental Health andPreventionofAddiction LLC with a recommendation to eliminate indirect discrimination based on the type of activity.

As the study of the case made it clear, it is the established practice at the Centerfor Mental Health andPreventionofAddiction to restrict self-employed persons from taking advantage of the exceptional opportunity to take medication away from the center, while formally employed persons are allowed to use this opportunity. Due to lack of flexible mechanisms, the persons who have to move across the country not for work but personal reasons may also find themselves in a disadvantageous position.

The Public Defender believes that, along with the continuity of treatment, earning livelihood is equally important for both the persons employed in the formal sector and the self-employed. The recommendation emphasizes that the concept of self-employed is recognized by both international standards and national legislation. In addition, during the Covid pandemic, the State recognized the importance of overcoming the problems caused by lack of income for self-employed persons, and some experience has already been accumulated in terms of confirming the fact of self-employment in the country.

The Public Defender of Georgia, in her recommendation, requested the introduction of flexible mechanisms and consideration of other excusable cases of travelling across the country in order to ensure the access of self-employed persons to the right to take away medication.

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