Koncepcja rodziny w przestrzeni litewskiej polityki rodzinnej
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The family, its conceptualization and functioning, as well as family policy are discussed at the personal, community and state level. Th is makes sense because diff erent cultural, historical, ethical, social and other alternations aff ect the assessment and evaluation of these three signifi cant components. Besides family policy is a very important part of public policy in a state, what makes obvious impact on every human life (even those who are living not in a family). Th e aim of this article is to shed light on theconcept of family, family functioning and family policy as three mutually interacting components in a unifi ed narrative. Th e object of study is the concept of family, family functioning and family policy from the perspective of its content. Th e research methods employed include analysis and design of scientifi c literature and documents. Th e article analyzes the defi nition of family, paying particular attention that diff erent authors present various defi nitions of families. Although these defi nitions focus on different aspects of families (e.g. marriage, community, the continuity of the nation, etc.), it is shown that in each country the concept of a family is regulated by laws, by which regulations (and other legal documents) are prepared. Th e legal concept of a family in Lithuania is still not entirely clear. Th e concept is not defi ned in the Constitution and marriage is not indicated as an obvious attribute of being a family. Meanwhile,the FamilyPolicyConcept(2008) clearly defi nes a family,indicatingthat marriage is necessarily between a manand a woman. Th e recognition of families only by marriage has raised many discussions among politicians, particular public interest groups and private individuals in Lithuania. Th ese discussions became even stronger when the Constitutional Court stated that the FamilyPolicyConcept(2008) contradicts the Constitution of Lithuania. Having in the mind, that the implementation of family policy in Lithuania is fragmented, lacks a unitary system, including the absence of an offi cial institution responsible for family policy (this function is currently delegated to Th e Ministry of Social Security and Labour), the implementation of family policy is legislated andimplemented without correct procedures. Following the concept of family, family functing and family policy analysis, it can be stated that the concept of family and its functions is diff erent. Th ey are both infl uenced by diff erent views from scholars’, politicians’ and other particular persons’ or groups’ regarding marriage, as well as socio-cultural, political and other factors. Th e variety of family conceptions encourages debate, which should not persist and interfere with the formation and implementation of State family policies. Th e concept of family, family functions and family policies are considered as three mutually interacting components. Based on this, the tools of appropriate and thoughtful family policy implementation can be formulated and developed. Family policy in Lithuania is not yet suffi ciently formulated in both conceptual and realizable levels. For that reason it is necessary to do a comprehensive study in order to provide a basis for implementing new family policies based on that study. Likewise, to develop the concept of family and family function, it is necessary to formulate an Educational Policy Concept and to implement its strategies, designing the tools for its implementation in the context.
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