Weekly news

ERIO'S WEEKLY E-NEWS 09-01-2013

ERIO news and activities

* ERIO celebrates its 10th anniversary!
For the last 10 years ERIO has been involved in fighting racism against Roma and in promoting the inclusion of Europe's largest minority. To celebrate our 10th anniversary we have created a brand new logo and given our website a new look! Come check us out! Visit our website.
* ERIO's new project: European Roma Integration Good Practice Exchange and Policy Network (ERNE)
We are a partner in this two-year project funded by the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme. The project is implemented in seven European countries (Germany, Austria, Belgium, Italy, Romania, Slovakia and Croatia). It aims to develop a platform for the sharing of good-practice information between actors in the education of Roma in four areas: pre-school, school, higher education and vocational courses.
Read more here.
* ERIO's new project: Arts for Roma Children (ART4ROM)
Art4ROM is a new project ERIO is involved in which is financed by the European Commission's Lifelong Learning Programme promoting intercultural dialogue within Roma and non-Roma children through arts. This two-year project is a partnership of eight partners covering five European countries: Belgium, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia and Spain.
Read more here.
* ROM-UP! project European Report "Successful educational experiences: promoting the integration of Roma in and through education"
As part of our joint project ROM-UP!, all partners collected successful educational experiences in promoting Roma education. Successful educational experiences in this project are defined as those actions that have already been proved to contribute to school success and social inclusion at compulsory level education (pre-primary, primary and secondary education, including vocational and special education programmes within regular schools) in disadvantaged communities (INCLUD-ED Consortium. Actions for success in schools in Europe. Brussels: European Commission, 2009).

Read the report here which includes the successful experiences selected for the project.

OTHER news

* Deputy PM joins outcry against anti-Roma remarks by leading Fidesz figure Bayer
Deputy Prime Minister Tibor Navracsics has condemned an article by journalist Zsolt Bayer, a member of the ruling party, whose content has been slammed as anti-Roma. Fidesz has no room for anyone “who labels a group of people as animals”, Navracsics told commercial television ATV in an interview late on Monday. Navracsics said that an article by Bayer, published in Magyar Hirlap daily at the weekend, contained “sentiments offensive to democracy, defying Fidesz’s democratic principles of community”.
 
Navracsics said that he “deeply” condemned Bayer’s remarks and added that “nobody must be put in a category based on his origin”. Commenting on a recent stabbing in a village south of Budapest involving suspected Roma assailants, wrote in Saturday’s Magyar Hirlap that “most Gypsies are unsuitable for co-existence, unsuitable for living among people. These Gypsies are animals and act as animals … they should not be tolerated or understood but punished.” 
Read more here.
* The Front Line Defenders Award
Every year Front Line Defenders presents the Front Line Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk to one person who has made an outstanding contribution to the cause of human rights. Previous winners of the Award have included human rights defenders from Syria, the Russian Federation, Afghanistan, Guatemala, DRC, Uzbekistan and Sudan.
Read more here.
* Czech presidential candidate says Romani people often do not enjoy equal rights
Every year Front Line Defenders presents the Front Line Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk to one person who has made an outstanding contribution to the cause of human rights. Previous winners of the Award have included human rights defenders from Syria, the Russian Federation, Afghanistan, Guatemala, DRC, Uzbekistan and Sudan. 
Read more here.
* European Year of Citizens 2013
Over the past 4 decades the European Union has been designating each year to a particular theme in order to stimulate debate and foster greater awareness of the issue chosen. This year, ‘the Citizen’ has been selected as the topic of discussion, with the official launch on the 11th January in Dublin initiating an international programme of events designed to engage EU citizens with their own political status. It is 20 years since EU citizenship was first enshrined in the Treaty of Maastricht, a defining step on the path to ‘ever closer union’. However, the extent to which the people of the EU are aware of their citizenship rights and actively engage with them varies considerably. Notably, Roma communities in many member states lack the social, economic and political integration required to activate their citizenship rights. Consequently, this year’s programme raises the valuable opportunity for an important debate about what citizenship can and should mean for everyone, with the chance to look in particular detail at how it can be a tool for the integration of Europe’s marginalized communities. 

Development and maintenance of the Programme
The Year of Citizens was first mooted in a Commission Citizenship Report on 27th October 2010 and was eventually made official in a Decision of the European Parliament and the European Council on the 21st November 2012. It is a concerted response to worries in the institutions that there is not enough active engagement with EU citizenship.

The responsibility of overseeing the program lies with the Commission, with Viviane Reding, the Vice-President and EU Commissioner for Justice, Rights and Citizenship, taking control of its organization. The Commission will work with a number of strategic partners to ensure the success of the campaign, these include: the EU Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee, the Committee of the Regions, the Council of Europe, national coordinating bodies and the European Year of Citizens Alliance, a network of 50 civil society organizations.

In addition to a portion of the programme’s budget being spent on providing funding for civil society grassroots campaigns, the Commission itself is responsible for providing: a communication campaign, opening and closing conferences and meetings between EU Commissioners and citizens from across the European Union.
 
Priorities 
  • Raise the awareness of the general public about the rights and responsibilities attached to European Union citizenship and how they can tangibly enjoy those rights;
  • Raise awareness amongst the general public of how citizenship rights arise when they exercise their free movement rights and move to another member state;
  • Implement specific actions to raise awareness of opportunities to volunteer, study abroad, participate in a traineeship in another member state or take part in Union education exchange programmes;
  • Stimulate debate about the impact and potential of the right of freedom of movement and residence on social cohesion, equality and cultural diversity;
  • Take in to consideration the needs of vulnerable groups and ensure that clearly phrased information on their rights ofcCitizenship is freely provided to them in a language that they understand;
  • Promote active democratic participation and ensure an increased dialogue between the EU institutions and civil society. 
Targets
  • Provide the opportunity for all EU citizens to:
  • Learn about the rights and opportunities open to them through EU citizenship – particularly their right to live and work anywhere in the EU;
  • Take part in debates about the obstacles to using these rights and generate specific proposals for addressing them;
  • Participate in civic fora on EU policies and issues;
  • Prepare to vote in the 2014 European elections and engage in the EU’s democratic life.
Budget
  • €2 million
  • Direct Union initiatives (such as the opening and closing debates) will be financed by the general budget of the Union
To find out more about the European Year of Citizens 2013 visit the official website here.

News by Alex Brereton, ERIO

ANNOUNCEMENTS and events

* ERIO seminar "Roma women and employment" - 14.01.2013, Brussels
We are organising a seminar on Roma women and their employment conditions as part of our project KeyRoma. The seminar will at our office at Avenue Edouard Lacomblé 17, 1040 Brussels. You can register here
* European Commission “European Congress of Roma Mediators” - 17.01.2013, Brussels
The first Congress of Roma mediators from the Council of Europe/European Commission ROMED programme will take place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel. As well as Roma mediators and trainers from several different countries, participants at the event will include EU Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou and the Special Representative of the Council of Europe Secretary General for Roma issues, Jeroen Schokkenbroek. The message of the Council of Europe Secretary General will be transmitted and available on line on 17th January. Several European Union and Council of Europe officials will be present and other INGOs and organisations like Open Society Foundations, Roma Education Fund, UNESCO, OSCE/ODIHR to listen to and support the more than 250 Roma and Travellers from the 20 countries participating in the Programme.
* Open Society Foundations/University of Warwick Scholarships
The Open Society Foundations/University of Warwick jointly announced 2013 postgraduate Scholarships grants in the field of Gender Studies, Media and Journalism, Law, and Public Policy in UK. Students who have demonstrated both academic excellence and the potential to become leaders, decision-makers, and opinion formers in their own country. The scholarships enable scholars to pursue a twelve-month taught postgraduate course at the University of Warwick. Subject to satisfactory progress, the scholarships lead to the award of a Master’s degree. Each scholarship at the University of Warwick provides one-year tuition, a stipend to cover living costs (for one person only), and return air travel from the scholar’s home country. Upon completion of their studies in the UK, scholars are expected to return to their home country to resume their studies or work there.
Read more here.

Deadline: 28 January 2013
* Open Society Fellowship for pursuing innovative approaches to fundamental open society challenges
The Open Society Foundations’ Open Society Fellowship aims to support individuals pursuing innovative and unconventional approaches to fundamental open society challenges. The fellowship funds work that will enrich public understanding of those challenges and stimulate far-reaching and probing conversations within the Open Society Foundations and in the world. Fellows are expected to take full advantage of the foundations’ expansive reach and work to bring new people and fresh ideas into the organization’s ambit. Successful projects should push the boundaries of current thinking and carry lessons that can be applied to a variety of settings. The Open Society Fellowship accepts proposals from anywhere in the world.
Read more here.

Deadline: 1 February 2013
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