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Saturday, March 24, 2018

Alone against the system: as the fate of teachers who revealed election fraud

Next week the country will celebrate Teacher’s Day. Some teachers will not soon be able to cross the threshold of the scientific institution, if at all you can — talking about those who are caught in the machinations of electoral commissions.

We contacted those teachers, who know firsthand what the election fraud. These people from another “camp”: at the time they didn’t remain silent about what they were forced to do.

photo: Gennady Cherkasov

Teacher, Tatiana Ivanova from St. Petersburg became famous five years ago. After the elections in December 2011. Then, too, were elected deputies of the State Duma and the city Parliament.

Tatiana at that time was working as a teacher in the Petersburg school №575. Before the election, a woman with a fait accompli: it is necessary to ensure the victory of one party. Ivanova went into denial. Disobedience has cost her her job. After the dismissal of Tatiana told reporters, as employees of RONO and municipal electoral Committee declined her to ballot stuffing. Later, the authorities tried to accuse her of defamation through the courts, but the lawsuit was lost.

Tatiana Ivanova. Photo from personal archive

Read a material “the Petersburg court stood up for the supporter of fair elections

We caught up with Tatiana. Surprisingly, for a former teacher as if time had stopped. She’s still in the smallest details remembers the events of bygone days, remember the names of the offenders and could not hold back the tears when talking about the once-popular work.

– Tatiana, five years ago you had to resign from his native school. What are you doing now?

– Nothing. I sit at home.

In another school not settled?

– It was not. Proposals have been received. I was invited only to a private school, but I’m not interested. I refused.

– The elections as a member of the election Commission, too, you are no longer invited?

– In the spring of 2014 I was a member of the territorial Commission. In St. Petersburg took place the election of the Governor and municipal. But these elections have become my “Swan song”. My powers ended in may 2015, since the elections I have the same attitude as you.

– Surely you have colleagues who are still working in the elections. How was the Duma elections in comparison with 2011?

– All say that this time everything went more or less clean. I tend to trust people.

But I can say that, in comparison with 2011, the situation in the local elections in 2014 was even more disastrous. I could see it from the inside as a member of the territorial election Commission. Although I diligently cleaned off all meetings that have taken all measures so I stayed away from the chief electoral officer and saw no violations.

On election day they put me in the basement – assigned duties. I and the Chairman of the TEC was to take the documents, but not in the basement.

“We offered to throw 400 ballots”

– You well remember the time when he found himself a stranger among his own?

– Of course. Hard to forget that? In 2011 I was appointed Chairman of the Commission. It’s the time of the first election meeting where we handed out valuable advice. Notice, in the election I worked for 14 years. A decent experience. Know the technology “from” and “to”. Until 2011, the chairmen of the commissions were not principals, and they have better things to be doing. But in that year, introduced an innovation. Remember, my colleague came to the meeting and were stunned by the chairmen of precinct electoral commissions were all school principals.

– What was are you changing?

– Apparently, until someone realized that the school principals easier to press. The most vulnerable link in the chain of education.

But not all of them are pressed?

– I hope. But when I refused to participate in fraud, or one of the teachers who were at the meeting, did not stand up for me. Later nobody even confirmed the rightness of my words on the court. Although on the street I often saw colleagues, all of them in the face saying, “We’re all with you, our morning begins with a discussion of your situation and the day ends the same. We follow the process”. But out in the open never supported. We can understand them. Nobody wanted to lose their place.

Let’s go back to that meeting. What exactly told you?

Usually the chairmen of election commissions were collected in the building of the city administration. And this time we were invited to the social center. I went into the room and was just amazed. One present – only 5 presidents, whereas usually at least a hundred people gathered, the area at us big. The conversation was conducted behind closed doors.

Was artistului head of RONO and the man who introduced Sergei Ponomarev. We have to explain that it is necessary to ensure the victory of one party, offered us the options of how best to pull it off. Sounded absolutely incredible options. Since I’m in this thread was already 14 years old, he said to them: “I can do that any options to offer.” And then asked: “How do you see it?”.

– What are the options you offered?

– We were told that we should have two lists. And for half an hour until after the election is necessary to enter in the second a list of those voters who did not come. Then throw the same number of ballots in the ballot box.

And how many papers you had to throw in the trash?

– It was assumed that there will be 200 pieces. And we then took the double elections – parliamentary and legislative (legislative Assembly of the city – “MK”), so we had to throw 400 ballots. Then I asked, how are we going to have a fake voting documents? I have 200 people to make lists. Need passport data. We openly explained: “You will give the drives, where are all the lists of information on your constituents. You that you are in school, consider yourself at home. Sit on the floor above his man, and he will fill the papers to the observers did not notice anything”.

Is all paid for?

– To us promised to pay for 70 thousand rubles.

– I understand you refused a solid increase to the salary?

– I brushed aside any suggestions. It is given that I at that time was the party which offered to make stuffing. After the first meeting, my colleague left dumbfounded.

Then we gathered for the second time. I remember in that meeting was attended by the Director of one school, we were well acquainted, but after a while, when I was accused of slander, she testified against me in court. Despite the fact that I immediately voiced my position, the leaders of the election meeting was unrelenting, my words a deaf ear.

Last time we were collected two days before the election. We have already started to work at the polls. And on that day, I brought the “left” lists. He handed it over to the member of the election Commission. However, later at trial, he claimed he was absent on the site. Incidentally, this man, the Prosecutor’s office, as far as I know. To the election of 2016 he was promoted, made the President Tick.

– Despite your refusal to make stuffing, you still brought a list? Why?

– May have hoped to the last that I’ll change my mind, scared of losing their job.

– And what did you do with these lists?

Said: “don’t take it, take it back.” Them and taken away.

Just before the elections, I and my another colleague were called to the TEAK. Invited personally by the Chairman of the TEC: “Girls, come, we need to talk”. Notice that with this man we have worked for many years, and, in addition to good, nothing to say about him. We have never been let down. He knew that on our sites, elections are always held pure.

In short, we came with a colleague in TEC. We started in the break room. Talked with us that day, not the chair, and the woman who worked in my opinion in Interviews. The lady immediately asked loudly. She shouted to us, they say what you build, you want to be the “black sheep”. In the end calmed down: “What are you afraid of? We have a whole Commission of jurists works.”

– So you were given to understand that in case of an emergency situation you will cover?

– So. She then hinted: “You are afraid I will tell everyone about this story?”. And heard in reply: “You can’t prove anything”. In the end, we parted good. But in that moment I clearly decided that this just will not leave. I went back to school, and what was my surprise when on my Desk I saw the same “left” lists. While I was out, the list still brought there and left. The Commission in fact already worked at the school. And my employee was instructed: “a List to convey to the President”.

What did you do with these lists?

That day I took them to his office and locked in the safe. I kept them for a long time. As a memory. Burned a year ago.

“Her need to expel, and you are her prize want to write”

How was election day itself?

– On election day we already nobody touched. Although the night before the leadership of the district Board offered to withdraw my candidacy from the post of Chairman. Thank God, they didn’t have authorization to do so. We have worked elections, reported, handed over the documentation. It was the middle of December. And at the end of the year teachers are usually charged a premium. Ridiculous, what is the sum if the salary of teachers 19 thousand rubles. And when the Director of our school took it to the district Board a list for the award, there have been large eyes, seeing my name: “Ivanov need to remove the post, and you write her award”.

Then I began to dig. Found fault with the fact that to me the school has a daughter and a son. And my son worked part time, consider moonlighting. He received a salary of 2 thousand rubles, was working in building maintenance.

The Director of the school after visiting RONO came back not herself: “I think I’ll take it.” I knew immediately what was the matter: “What I have to do to give us a quietly refined?”. The Director perked up, “Give up award”. I refused, wrote a statement. And then I wondered, maybe I might quit worth it?

The Director shrugged: “no, not Yet, will modify, we’ll see.” I was so displeased by this phrase – “a year to finalise”. I understand, if you will, the torment of school inspections, as is always the case. No accident there is an expression: “Tell me that you need someone to drown, send me to school. I dig”.

At that moment I wanted to shout to the whole world. And I made the decision to leave on the deserved pension. The next day I put the resignation letter on the table the Director. And I noticed how she was breathing, thank God he’s leaving. I left, and then told their stories to journalists.

– Then had to sue the representatives of the district Board?

– Yes, and it was awful. Let’s start with the fact that I never tried. I at that age. And in my concept, the court is bad. The lawyer I had. How to prepare for court, I didn’t know. I didn’t even know how to address the judge. But when the meeting saw the ordinary people who came to support me, I was relieved.

Representatives of the district Board in the court did not appear even once. The process lasted a long time, I was constantly asked what I will do if you lose? I said I will sue you in international court.

Everything ended in my favor.

– After the last election in relation to teachers who did stuffing, opened a criminal case. What do you think it might end?

In my opinion, it is naive to assume that someone will be punished, and the more will be planted. After my trial, when the truth came out, the head of RONO that gave me the instructions for stuffing, was on the rise. She became Deputy head of the district administration. Even at the time of the trial was not removed from office…

– You humanly feel sorry for those teachers who are now accused of stuffing? Against their will they do it.

– Not sorry. Each person has a choice. It is not easy. I’m not gonna lie. Before you leave, I cried all night. I gave so many years to education. Had to release that year, my 11th grade. I understand that betray them. I was in pain. But I made this choice. In life we all go through trials of love, power and money. Not many of them survive. So I don’t feel sorry for these teachers. I think they shouldn’t teach children.

Among principals who were present with you at pre-election meetings in 2011, someone else refused to make stuffing?

– About the rest I don’t know. But I can assume that, basically, all went to deal with his conscience. When I watched our last gubernatorial election, I was in shock. If then, in 2011, we collected at least five people, all carried out secretly, quietly, in 2014, school principals gathered everyone in the great hall, and all were given a setting, how to work with early voters. And when someone noticed me in the hall, I heard a whisper: “Ivanova Here, all is lost.” Then I also, being a member of the election Commission, tried to reach the authorities, but I have not heard. If at least one person after the election, though, came off the post, the next time people would be thinking — is it worth it Mara? And we have only fire teachers for disobeying.

– You are first faced with the massive fraud in 2011 alone. Turns out, before the elections were held more or less smoothly?

– This is my story. Until 2011, we do not touch. We worked the election on the five plus. The late Chairman of the Tick called us “attendant-excellent pupil”. We had received no complaints from observers. Moreover, these observers have worked with us for one election and asked us the following. Because they are nice to work in a relaxed atmosphere.

– With regard to observers – if the area is planned stuffing coming out, and observers should be “its”?

– So, so. Because throw papers discreetly is problematic. It is necessary that there was no one. But in any case, to throw 200 of them — is unrealistic. In 2011, my section stood the urn of the old model. Theoretically, unnoticed really can throw five ballots at a time. Man comes into the booth for a secret ballot, fills the papers, then goes out and throws. Observers of the law can’t stop him with the words: “Show how many throws, we will count”. But to throw 3-5 extra ballots is not 400. In the “electronic” ballot box vote would not pass and five extra leaves. Probably before those elections, all pre-pondered, stuffing offered to do in areas where there were boxes of old design.

– After the incident, colleagues in the schools called you supported?

– No one called is not supported. On the street I was met by friends, said worried about me. Heard that many members of the district Board were worried for me. But much support I have not heard.

– This year you have not worked in the elections?

– I have closed this topic. Remember, in their last election in 2014, I came to one site, as a member of the TIC, and asked to produce lists. So the members of the Commission called the police. Later I was told that I was given the installation of Ivanov to prevent the foreign plots and especially to lists. So now I go to the polls only to vote. And believe me, if all people came to vote, and stuffing would not be.

Read the story “In a Network there was video of “stuffing” in Rostov-na-Donu

“After my discharge, I don’t want to have anything to do with schools”

For many people who worked in the elections and refused to participate in the fraud, life turned on its head.

Julia Kapichnikova. Photo from personal archive

Julia Kapichnikova, a young primary school teacher from Tambov. In 2012 she was appointed an observer at a polling station. Julia honestly did his work. Documented violations – stuffing, PostScript 600 votes.

After the vote Kapichnikova refused to sign the Protocol on the results of the presidential election. The head teacher of the school where she worked as Julia, announced his subordinate reprimanded and advised to quit. As a result, the history of Kapichnikova received wide publicity.

– After the hype at school left me, but looked at me askance. In the end, I finalized until maternity leave, and then went to another school, ” admits Julia. But since then, I vowed never to participate in the election campaign. I know that in many regions is still laid off teachers for disobedience. There are those who leaves on their own after the election.

The teacher of a rural school in the Ryazan region Raivo, Stulberg was fired when he refused to agitate the people before the elections in 2015 (In the Ryazan region chose regional Duma – “MK”) for a particular party. Male published online exposing a video, which laid out the plain truth about forcing teachers to vote. He told me that for “decent voice” the village promised subsidies. However, in past years, the results of this infusion of money, the villagers have not seen.

Raivo, Stulberg. Photo from personal archive

After that, the Director of the school where he worked Stulberg, advised the teacher to resign for good. Raivo wrote a letter of resignation at own will.

– About the last election, I can’t say anything, ” says Raivo, Stulberg. – I for a year have no relationship to the school and hope that never will be. Former colleagues also had said nothing. Afraid for their jobs.

In my time, the authorities stuck to this wording that teachers are not forced, but asked to campaign. That is, people, like, and can refuse him nothing happens. The headmaster then told me straight: “I was asked to hand out leaflets, do I people to say no?”. Head of RONO also asked other people at the top. I suspect that those – also “please”.

Schools are sitting pawns, and each of them buck as you can, to superiors noticed and noted. All to be found, too long chain is formed. Well, “ugolovku” to have for stuffing and stuff will be the “scapegoat”, that is the teacher. As far as I know, the notorious criminal case instituted now against the head teacher of the Nizhny Novgorod school, almost the first in the history of electoral ballot box stuffing. Maybe get off with a fine or conditional her soldered. But nerves man Pat. And still “was under investigation” is for the teacher big stigma.

Read the story “How much was given, much was thrown”: accused of ballot stuffing by the teacher knew about the camera”

Anton Popov, a teacher from the city Is also trying to fight for the truth. However, his story is not connected with the elections. But the teacher participation in elections it also has something to say.

Anton Popov. Photo from personal archive

– I once complained to one student that didn’t have brakes. Then I even sent in a reception Putin video lessons. Asked in the letter to provide the school with at least some cheap cameras to prove how disgusting the behavior of this teenager. In the end, the Director forced me to write a letter of resignation. I left the school. Six months working in a hospital as a programmer. But since September is back to school. My place no one wanted to take – it was not the crowds who want to teach these children, and even for pennies to drive in a rural school.

Understand that unwanted teachers clean everywhere. In this system, the main thing – to be able to bend and obey..

As for the elections, I did this year was sitting in the Commission. My father was Chairman in the area. We have no violations existed. I think such things happen in crowded cities, where if fired, the man would still find a job. In the villages no risk to voter fraud, then the villagers to look into the eyes?

In the city easier – you don’t know anybody, nobody knows you. Much depends on the head of the station and how independent people sitting with him in the Commission. For example, we have members of the Commission were pensioners and people who are not related to school. If not, they will not be silent…

Finally, we contacted the employees of the teachers ‘ trade Union movement. Assuming that there is nothing about these stories needs to know. Addressed to the co-chair of the Interregional trade Union of workers of education “Teacher” Andrey Demidov. The man frankly admitted: “to the Teacher about stuff, even anonymously to tell will not be. Why are they a problem?”.

Read the story “Pamfilova has cancelled the results of elections in 9 areas: “Mystical coincidence”.



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