Kazakhstan embraces new emergency service

The new service has been created with the purpose of providing psychological assistance to those who find themselves in trouble / Photo: Shutterstock

According to Deputy Prime Minister Tamara Duysenova, Kazakhstanis who are suffering from domestic violence or bullying can call 111 and get the necessary help. The new emergency service has been introduced today, October 16, and will be available around the clock.

Who is eligible for the service? According to the press service of the prime minister, the new 111 service is available for every Kazakhstani who is suffering from family violence or bullying.

Who will provide the assistance? In order to help people facing challenging circumstances in life, the government has hired qualified psychologists and legal lawyers. They will provide people with the necessary help through phone conversations and messaging.

«A call is free of charge from both fixed and mobile phones,» the press service said in a statement.

What did Duysenova say? According to the deputy prime minister, the new call center is going to play a very important role.

«The new hotline is going to be part of a list of public emergency services 101, 102, 103, etc. This will assist us in helping people in need and prevent potential wrongdoings and crimes,» the agency said.

In 2023, during the sixth meeting of the National Council of Public Trust, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said that the punishment for perpetrators of domestic violence must be strengthened.

Moreover, the president suggested establishing a system of social rehabilitation and re-education of abusers.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the number of family violence reports has been growing each year. Last year, for example, the police reported that they received 125,000 such statements.

Since May 2023, Kazakhstan has relied on amended legislation on domestic violence. The punishment has become tougher, while the settlement between parties in the court can be reached only once. For example, previously, the court could arrest a violent spouse for a period of up to five days. The amended rule calls for five days of arrest for family violence and ten days in jail if a perpetrator repeatedly commits a crime.

In September, Zharkynbek Amantay, a member of the parliament from the Amanat party, suggested isolating women whose husbands were arrested for family violence as they also bear responsibility for provoking conflicts and must be punished as well.

However, the interior ministry hasn’t supported the idea, instead saying that the task to protect victims of domestic violence and the idea of imposing any sort of fines for them contradict each other.

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