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Administrative services of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) and the State Migration Service of Ukraine (SMS): results of sociological survey

22.11.13 | KhISR

Public opinion poll of administrative services users and analysis of legislation in this area were held in the framework of joint study of Association of Ukrainian monitors in Law Enforcement Agencies and Kharkiv Institute for Social Researches. The survey had uncovered that every third respondent who received administrative services, considers that system is ineffective in a varying degree (33, 9%).
• Key barriers on the pathway of service receiving are following: queues (37,7%); difficulty and complexity of procedures (27,8%); lack of minimal comfort in waiting zones (20,7%); difficulty of finding reliable, updated information about the procedure, payments, contacts of specialists (20,7%).
• The research uncovered significant contradictions between system of providing of administrative services by the police and the personal experiences of citizens. Thus, the vast majority of citizens say that they have received services by fulfilling the requirements of all formal procedures (84,6% of responses). However, significantly fewer respondents select official procedure answering the question of what tools and paths of docs’ proceeding in law-enforcement agencies are the most common and effective in Ukraine (54,4% and 55,5% respectively).
• Only 1,7% of respondents admitted that they had given direct bribes to employees of agency that provides administrative services. However, estimated level of corruption amounts 10-12%, exactly such part of respondents considers that a bribe is the most common and most effective way of docs’ proceeding in Ukrainian law-enforcement agencies.
• Among the most corrupt administrative services in the law-enforcement agencies is State Automobile Inspection (traffic police) and foreign passport issuing. For example, of those who gave a bribe, every third it for "registration, re-registration of vehicles with a registration certificate or its duplicate and license plates" (28,8%), every fifth paid a bribe for "registration and issuance of the passport of the citizen of Ukraine for traveling abroad" (17,3%) and for "issuing driving licenses for the right to drive vehicles" (17,3 %).
• There are some regional differences in relation to bribes as a way of obtaining the necessary service from the police. Thus, most respondents put down this way as the most effective in Lviv (20,7 %), Mykolaiv (17,8 %) and Kharkiv (17,2%). People of Luhansk choose this way as an effective less than other regions’ residents (3,3 %).
• The study has evaluated the financial costs faced by service users. Thus, a large number of respondents had paid the money for a number of services that were officially free. Only 14,7% of respondents said that they received public service of issuing Ukrainian passport for free, 36,3 % of respondents indicated that photo was put in their passports for free, less than half of those who responded (39%) indicated that got free information about the existence / absence of a previous criminal record.
• 26,9 % of respondents wanted to pay for the acceleration of the procedure. Most often people were just ready to pay 500 UAH. Most people were ready to give money for the acceleration or receiving of service in Lviv (53,3 %), Kyiv (35%) and Simferopol (34,9 %), the lowest - in Luhansk (19,7%) and Lutsk (4,7%).
• Despite the fact that only one in four respondents (26,9%) was willing to pay, actually 38,4 % of respondents paid for the acceleration. Probably, the difference in percentage includes first of all a few cases of extortion money from people who came to receive administrative services. The average amount of remuneration was 647 UAH, most often 500 UAH was paid.
• Among the priorities for improvement of the provision of administrative services by the police, respondents identified: creating comfortable conditions in waiting zones (27,2%) and simplification of an access to information on procedures, fees, contacts of specialists (26,7%). Another, equally important objective should be a creation of a “single window system” for services. This is indicated by one in five respondents (20,9%). Almost as many respondents believe that the service could be improved if you increase the number of staff (19,9%) and getting a consultation via the Internet (19%).

The survey included:
- Survey of administrative services’ users (for this purpose 3,000 respondents were surveyed in 10 regions of Ukraine: Simferopol, Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporizhzhya, Kyiv, Luhansk, Lutsk, Lviv, Mykolaiv, Kharkiv, Chernihiv);
- 20 interviews (with experts and users of services) and 5 focus groups with experts (MIA employees, lawyers, social activists, professionals engaged in the provision of administrative services) were conducted.
Based on the characteristics of the object, purpose and objectives of this study, exit poll technique was used for the survey to select one out of five respondents among those who received administrative services in the MIA of Ukraine. Points of surveys were located in the areas of providing of administrative services (traffic police department, SMS, MREV (Interdistrict Registration and Examination Office), police stations).