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Europe's Roma Community Still Facing Massive Discrimination | Amnesty International

Europe's Roma Community Still Facing Massive Discrimination | Amnesty International

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Published by bgeller4936
Roma, racism, prejudice
Roma, racism, prejudice

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Categories:Types, Research, Law
Published by: bgeller4936 on Apr 11, 2010
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10-04-08 5:09 PMEurope's Roma community still facing massive discrimination | Amnesty InternationalPage 1 of 8http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/feature-stories/europes-roma-community-still-facing-massive-discrimination-20090408
Romani children in special school, Ostrava,Czech Republic, 10 February 2009
© Amnesty International
Toy in the ruins of a Roma settlement,Ponticelli, Naples, on 27 May 2008
© Iulian Stoian/Roma Civic Alliance of Romania
8 April 2009
The RomacommunitysuffersmassivediscriminationthroughoutEurope.Denied their rights tohousing,employment,healthcare andeducation,Roma areoften victims of forcedevictions,racist attacksand police ill-treatment.Livingpredominantlyon the marginsof society,Roma ar eamong themost deprivedcommunities inEurope. Insomecountries, theyare preventedfrom obtainingcitizenship andpersonal documents required for social insurance, healthcare and other benefits. 
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10-04-08 5:09 PMEurope's Roma community still facing massive discrimination | Amnesty InternationalPage 2 of 8http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/feature-stories/europes-roma-community-still-facing-massive-discrimination-20090408
Romani children are frequently unjustifiably placed in"special schools" where curtailed curricula limit their possibilities for fulfilling their potential.Wednesday is
International Roma Day
, a celebration of Romani culture that aims to raise awareness of the issuesfacing Roma people. Held on 8 April every year since 1990,the Day draws attention to discrimination directed at Romaand Gypsy communities globally.
Denied a proper education in the Czech Republic andSlovakia
Discrimination against Roma continues in the CzechRepublic. An anti-Roma march by far-right protestersthrough the Romani community in P
ř 
erov descended intoviolence on Saturday, when demonstrators clashed withcounter-demonstrators.An estimated 300,000 Roma live in the Czech Republic,making up less than 3 per cent of the population.Unemployment particularly affects Czech Romacommunities, who are estimated by some sources to makeup a third of all those registered as unemployed in theCzech Republic. The Roma are also among the mostvulnerable to police ill-treatment and other racially motivatedviolence.The Constitution of the Czech Republic guarantees that allchildren have the right to an education. Yet, despite positivemeasures taken in 2005 – in removing the category of "special schools" and the creation of measures to facilitatethe integration of Roma children into the main educationalsystem – there is still discrimination and intentional exclusionof Romani children from mainstream education.The practice of segregating Romani children in schools for children with mental disabilities continues, despite a ruling bythe European Court of Human Rights in November 2007 thatit amounted to unlawful discrimination.In Slovakia, huge numbers of Romani children areinappropriately placed in "special schools" for children withmental disabilities, where they receive a substandard 
Denied a proper education in the Czech Republicand SlovakiaDiscrimination in ItalyAnti-Roma sentiment on the rise in HungaryForced evictions in SerbiaRefused adequate housing in RomaniaForcibly returned to Kosovo
 
10-04-08 5:09 PMEurope's Roma community still facing massive discrimination | Amnesty InternationalPage 3 of 8http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/feature-stories/europes-roma-community-still-facing-massive-discrimination-20090408
education, and have very limited opportunities for employment or further education. Independent studiessuggest that as many as 80 per cent of children placed inspecial schools in Slovakia are Roma.Pavlovce nad Uhom is a town in eastern Slovakia, 10kmfrom the borders with Ukraine. More than 50 per cent of its4,500 inhabitants are Roma. There are two elementaryschools in the town: a mainstream school and a specialschool for children with mental disabilities.In July 2008, nearly two thirds of Romani children attendingprimary school in Pavlovce nad Uhom were de factosegregated in the special school. Of approximately 200pupils at the special school, 99.5 per cent were Roma.
Back to topDiscrimination in Italy
Since 2007, the Italian authorities have increasingly adopted"security" measures, which appear to be discriminatory,affecting disproportionally the Roma and Sinti minority.Special agreements were signed in May 2007 between thenational government and local authorities of major cities,transferring some powers from the Ministry of Interior’s remitto the local authorities.The aim was to address perceived security threats, includingthose supposedly posed by the presence of Roma and Sinticommunities in these cities.In May 2008, a Decree by the President of the Council of Ministers conferred emergency powers to the Prefetti (whoare permanent representatives of the national government inthe territory) for one year, in order to solve the "nomademergency," while using a law of 1992 enacted to providefor emergency measures in case of natural disasters.The powers can be exercised against people of anynationality who are deemed to be “nomads”. They appear todisproportionately affect Roma and Sinti people.The Prefetti may derogate from a number of laws, includingthose which confer rights to all people in regard to thepowers of the authorities. They were also given the power tocarry out a “census”, collecting data, including fingerpirnts,exclusively from those deemed to be ‘nomads’ – whethethey were Italian, EU, or non-EU citizens. Serious concernshave been raised about the discriminatory nature of the"census". 

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