The global financial and economic crisis has forcefully underlined the importance of social security as ahuman right, and as an economic and social necessity, as set out in the ILO Social Protection Floors Recommendation(2012), No. 202.

While the need for social protection is widely recognized, the fundamental human right to social security remains unfulfilled for the large majority of the world’s population. Only 27 per cent of the global population enjoy access to comprehensive social security systems, whereas 73 per cent are covered partially or not at all. The lack of access to social protection constitutes a major obstacle to economic and social development.

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We are deeply sorry to announce the sad news that our distinguished colleague Dejan Palić, Deputy Ombudsman from 2004 to 2013, passed away. Dejan Palić was born on August 6th, 1957 in the city of Rijeka and graduated from the Faculty of Law - University of Zagreb in 1984. Prior to this function, he served several positions in the field of free legal aid, protection and promotion of human rights.

As the Deputy Ombudsman in charge for different fields of human rights protection and combating discrimination, Dejan participated in numerous human right events, gave lectures and contributed to numerous publications, as well as to the Ombudsman reports. On a daily basis he counseled citizens who turned for help to the Ombudsman’s Office. He performed this job with great devotion and sincere willingness to help each person whose rights were infringed or who just find her/him self in a difficult situation in life.

Based on received complaints and visits to psychiatric institutions, the need for amending and improving the existing Law on Protection for Persons with Mental Disorder was noticed and repeatedly pointed to by the Ombudsman in recent Annual Reports. Therefore the Ombudswoman made comments to the draft Law which envisages stronger human rights safeguards from which it is expected to reduce significantly the possibilities of the abuse of the rights of this vulnerable group.

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