Weekly news

ERIO'S WEEKLY E-NEWS 11-07-2014

ERIO news and activities

*  ERIO’s recommendations to the Italian EU Presidency
Between July-December 2014, Italy takes over the EU Presidency. The Presidency takes place at a crucial moment for the European Union. The EU finds itself in a recovery phase from the economic crisis and the European Parliament and Commission start their new term creating opportunities for a return to the EU founding values of unity, inclusion, human rights and respect. Italy should use this turning point to make social justice and Roma inclusion a priority for their Presidency and ensure that the new European Commission and Parliament keep these issues on the EU policy and political agenda. Investing in Roma inclusion will benefit society as a whole in the long term as it will reduce poverty; contribute to social cohesion and economic growth.

Click here to read our recommendations to the Presidency aiming to improve the Roma situation across Europe.
* Second SMILE’s partnership meeting in Brussels
The second partner’s meeting of the SMILE project was held on 7-8 July in Brussels. The aim of the meeting was for partners to share the results of the research phase in the countries involved in the project. The research involves an analysis of historical and social dynamics involving Roma and Gajde in the different project countries. It examines: a) prejudices, exclusion or auto‐segregation criteria, b) children safeguarding (ethnic specifics and common grounds) and c) education inside Roma communities (specifics and shared vision with Gajde).
* Consultation on the Action Plan for raising awareness about the Roma and Sinti Holocaust
As part of the MemoROM project, we are working on an action plan in order to raise awareness about the Roma and Sinti Holocaust. For the development of this action plan, we are currently consulting with the members of the International Roma and Sinti Remembrance Network, which has been created in the framework of the MemoROM project.

To find out more about MemoROM, visit the project website here.

OTHER news

* Polish far-right groups stir up anti-Roma hatred in the shadow of Auschwitz
By Wojciech Zurawski (The Independent)

09/07/2014 - Less than 20 miles from Auschwitz, where once they shouted “Jews out”, football fans chant “Gypsies out”. The small Roma community of Andrychow is living in fear since Polish far-right groups began a campaign of harassment against them. The campaign began with a rally last month where the chant “Cyganies raus” (Gypsies or Roma out) was heard and has continued with social media and intimidation.

Roman Kwiatkowski, head of the Association of Roma in Poland, said Andrychow is the first case he has seen of an organised anti-Roma campaign in the country. “It is very dangerous,” he said. “It does not allow us to look to the future with confidence.”

Read more here
* Second Roma family set to sue over wrongly taken girl
By Shane Phelan (Irish Independent)

03/07/2014 - A SECOND Roma family is poised to sue the State over a child being wrongfully taken into care, despite indications from Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald that a settlement would be offered to them.

Lawyers acting for the family of the girl known as Child T say they are "actively considering" a lawsuit after a report by the Ombudsman for Children highlighted a host of failings by gardai.
The family of Iancu Muntean, or Child A, who was also wrongly taken into state care last October, has already initiated legal proceedings against the State for distress and defamation.

Read more here
* How the media stoked, then fed off, the Roma story. The Special Inquiry into the removal of children from their parents has much to say about the media’s role
By Shane Hegarty (Irish Times)

05/07/2014 - The Special Inquiry into the taking of children from two Roma families in Athlone and Tallaght last October deserves to be read. Even in the often dry language of an official report, broken up in to introductions and conclusions, sub-sections and footnotes, the Ombudsman for Children Emily Logan delivers several emotional punches.
There are glimpses of the real children and families behind the necessary, but disconnecting, pseudonyms of Child A and Child T. They are there in the crying and pleading of Child T, a seven-year-old Tallaght girl, as she was taken to a foster family, and her refusal to eat anywhere but at school over the two-day period she was gone.

Read more here
* This Project Is Helping France Unlearn Its Stereotypes About Romania
By Global Voices

08/07/2014 - Misinformation abounds in France when it comes to Romania, and the Newsroum project, an online initiative that sought to present different perspectives on Romania than have been shown in France's mainstream media, wanted to do something about it.

Indeed, clichés abound in France about the eastern European country and especially about the Roma community. As previously reported on Global Voices, the Roma community face the stigma of being thieves or not being willing to follow society's rules in France. To be clear, Romania is not the same as the Roma community, who live throughout Europe, but the confusion is common and the prejudices hurt both the Roma community and the citizens of Romania at large.

Read more here
* Czech media regulator says Prima TV incites fear of Roma, station disagrees
By ČTK, TÝDEN.cz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

27/06/2014 - News server TÝDEN.cz reports that the Prima television station's recent newscasts in the Czech Republic have confirmed viewers' prejudices against Romani people in at least six cases. The Czech Council for Radio and Television Broadcasting (Rada pro rozhlasové a televizní vysílání - RRTV) has warned the station's operators of the incidents.

The criticized reports allegedly have sparked fear of Romani people, portraying them as criminals or as a group that devastates the neighborhood around them. Prima broadcast the reports between 9 April and 31 May this year as part of a show called "Where Others Fear To Go" (Kam se jiní bojí), part of the main evening news reporting on the station.

Read more here
* Czech media regulator says Prima TV incites fear of Roma, station disagrees
By Phil Henry & Michael Daduc

03/07/2014 - In the past few years, many have made their home in Derby, the most central UK city, which has a population of more than 248,000. Roma Community Care, supported by the Multi-Faith Centre at the University of Derby, is working with the Eastern European Roma community to offer support and help Roma become full, active, and equal citizens. We spoke with leaders from both of these organizations.

Phil Henry, Multi-Faith Centre at the University of Derby

People often ask, Why do Roma come to Derby? But the town is no stranger to migration from the east. Since the Balkan wars in the 1990s, we have welcomed refugees from Bosnia and Kosovo; Derby is on the main bus route from Dover so it is a natural stopping off point.

Read more here

ANNOUNCEMENTS and events

* Paruvipe Grants Program
The Paruvipe grants program — paruvipe means “change” in the Romani language — supports advocacy campaigns in Bulgaria, Macedonia, and Romania aimed at influencing public decision-making, service delivery, and state responses to acts of hate.
Through this call for concept papers, the Roma Initiatives Office is seeking proposals for campaigns that will forge new interest-based alliances, build mass constituencies, and use new communication tactics.
This call supports opportunity-driven advocacy, which involves recognizing and utilizing opportunities in mainstream decision-making processes.
Application deadline: July 17, 2014, 2014u

Read more here
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