The AOP was established to develop a network providing advisory services to citizens. This network provides independent, professional, impartial and free professional advice in relation to 18 different topic areas, and informs relevant national and local authorities about the shortcomings of legislation and about unresolved issues that citizens have.
The following is a list of the areas in which the AOP provides advice:
State social benefits / social services / social insurance / labour-law and employment issues / housing / family and personal relationships / civil relations / taxation / health and social insurance / education and training / personal debt / consumer protection / national legal system / EU legal system / judicial proceedings and alternatives / public administration / criminal law / protection of fundamental rights and freedom.
The main target group for advisors is citizens experiencing difficult life situations. Citizens advice usually helps the more vulnerable groups in society, such as parents, the unemployed, people living close to the poverty line and ethnic minorities. Citizens advice services are however being used increasingly by citizens with above-average incomes and above-average levels of education.
The goal of citizens advice is to provide the highest level of socially-oriented advisory services, however clients are supported in order to act independently, so that they will not become entirely dependent upon the work of advisors. The advice provided must be impartial and neutral (without any evaluation) and must be relevant to the client's situation. Citizens advice always respects the client and his or her decisions concerning further action to be taken.
Since 1998 we have been able to build up an extensive network of advice services across all regions of the Czech Republic. This allows for the implementation of a unified system of quality management for all services provided. For citizens, this means that the same advice will be provided at all centres. The AOP has developed the Service Centre, which provides methodological, training and informational services for citizens advice and which also controls the quality of advice being provided in order to achieve the highest professional levels of advice provision. To assist advisors a unified system of training and continuing education has been created.
Citizens' interests are also represented centrally. AOP representatives participate in the work of two sections of the Czech Government Council on Human Rights. We participate in the Legislative Commission of the Government Council for Sustainable Development, in the housing tripartite - in the advisory body of the Ministry for Regional Development, in the Commission for the Development of Social Services of the MLSA - group for social prevention. Citizens' interests are also represented in the Anti-Corruption Commission of the Prague City Government, and we are members of the Consumer Advisory Committee at the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
The AOP is involved in improving the delivery of professional advice in the Czech Republic by gathering and transferring valuable experience. The AOP is a founding member of both Citizens Advice International and the Association of Social Counseling.
The Association of Citizens Advice implements projects that are mainly focused on education, counselling, employment or providing methodological support.
The Association of Citizens Advice regularly organises training courses for its members, which are accredited by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs. These courses are also open to non-members.
The AOP service centres do not directly serve clients who require professional advice. They provides services to the entire association as well as communicating with state administration agencies and professionals. None of their staff are advisors who can help find a solution for your specific situation. However you can obtain advice at any of the citizens advice contact points operating throughout the Czech Republic. You can find their contact details and opening hours via the contact links here. If you contact us for help, then we will refer you to one of the contact points listed in this directory.
AOP Service Center
130 00 Praha 3
Telephone (+420) 284 019 220
(between 10:00 and 15:00.)
VAT number: CZ65998642