Thousands of children in Armenia are needlessly separated from their parents and placed in institutions due to disability or poverty, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The government should urgently provide community-based services and quality inclusive education so that all children, including children with disabilities, can grow up in a family.
The 102-page report, “‘When Will I Get to Go Home?’ Abuses and Discrimination against Children in Institutions and Lack of Access to Quality Inclusive Education in Armenia”, documents how thousands of children in Armenia live in orphanages, residential special schools for children with disabilities, and other institutions. They often live there for years, separated from their families. Over 90 percent of children in residential institutions in Armenia have at least one living parent. Human Rights Watch also found that the Armenian government is not doing enough to ensure inclusive quality education for all children, including children with disabilities studying in their community schools with reasonable support for academic and other achievements.