ERIO'S WEEKLY E-NEWS 22-02-2013
ERIO news and activities
Ivan Ivanov the Executive Director of ERIO said that the UN should be more visible and active when it comes to ensuring that the national laws and policies of EU member states and accession countries comply with UN conventions and treaties which they have signed up to. Now days member states and countries in accession follow the instructions of the EU, other international treaties are ignored even if they are as good as or better than the EU legislation. An adequate reaction by all international actors is needed to recognize and tackle the ongoing discrimination of the Roma in all walks of life. Due to the long term fight by advocacy and human rights organisations - in certain fields like education - national authorities have recognised that the Roma are treated unequally and have taken some measures within the framework of their national strategies to ensure equal access to education for Roma children. But there are fields where authorities still deny that the Roma face serious barriers such as health care. Advocacy groups should strive for success in all fields in which the Roma suffer discrimination and exclusion at the same time, instead of seeking results in one field before targeting another problematic field.
The meeting included discussion on the Roma and Traveller situation in Belgium and Europe. CAHROM members from France, Spain, Switzerland and United Kingdom asked specific questions concerning the social issues, life style and equal treatment of the Roma and Traveller communities. ERIO's director, Ivan Ivanov presented the work of his organization emphasizing ERIO’s involvement in the consultation process for the EU Framework for National Roma Integration Strategies as well as in the Roma related policy making activities of the Council of Europe. He stated that ERIO’s network was closely involved in the work on the development of the National Roma Integration Strategies (NRIS) in most EU member states and that now the challenge is their implementation. Mr. Ivanov was asked to comment on the situation in Spain and France and also to give examples of successful initiatives. He told CAHROM members that the NRIS combined with other national existent general policies and legislation should be adequate to achieve the free movement of Roma in the EU and to overcome any problems resulting from this kind of migration. Mr. Ivanov stressed that participation of the Roma and Traveller communities at all levels is very important and that to achieve their social inclusion and equal treatment effective implementation aiming at concrete results is needed as well as the strict and strategically focused use of the structural and other states funds.
You can find out more about the project here: http://www.rom-up.eu/home
At the event, ERIO stated that the Roma community is one of the most marginalized in the EU, and that they face wide-spread social, political and economic discrimination in numerous member states. Given these citizens’ lack of integration, we asked how the EU institutions are going to work to inform the Roma of their citizenship rights, and help them overcome the obstacles to their enjoyment. Paul Nemitz, Commission director for fundamental rights and citizenship, responded by stating that certainly more needs to be done to provide funding for Roma inclusion, however, the Commission is in dialogue with the member states on this point and will analyse the forthcoming National Roma Integration Strategies’ implementation report before deciding on its next course of action. He then commented that the Commission, ‘in so far as helping Roma secure their rights, is providing more action than has ever been seen before’.
Viviane Reding concluded the session with an impassioned address to the hearing. She stated that ´citizenship of the EU is intended to be the fundamental status of member state nationals and is core to integration´. For her, the key challenge to be met by the Year of Citizens is that ´whilst many feel they are EU citizens, they do not know what rights and obligations arise from this´.
If you would like to join the network please complete the online registration form here. Once registered you will receive an email giving you more information about how to contribute to the debate on the network’s forum (on both the project and ways to improve the educational inclusion of Roma in Europe). The forum will be moderated and only comments relevant to the goals of ROM-UP! will be published.
To find out more about the network and to sign up please visit the website: http://www.rom-up.eu./romani-network.htm
You will find there the links to the full publication (a must read for deeper reflection), a shorter analytical piece (goes perfectly with the morning coffee) and the policy brief (ideal ammunition for any policy event on Roma health). You can also access the other entries of our “Roma Inclusion Working Papers” series – on Slovak ESF funded projects claiming to address Roma inclusion, on Roma civil society, Roma education as well as the methodological challenges of (and possible approaches to) sampling Roma communities in integrated household surveys.
The report can be found here.
Read more here.
"You must remove the children from that environment and put them somewhere else," Fico said on Tuesday when speaking to a group of college students. He was discussing how to ensure a better future for children from the Romani community who live in conditions that are inappropriate. Fico not only spoke of "special facilities", but also of the fact that even though such an approach might be appropriate, it would prompt protests abroad and among human rights activists, whom he termed "sanctimonious". He told the students that "we either tell everyone that the situation in Slovakia is extreme and that extreme measures must be adopted for extreme situations, or we will just keep gabbling away about it".
Read more here.
Read more here.
According to Agence France-Presse, French Re-Industrialization Minister Arnaud Montebourg immediately responded and has declared war on Taylor: "Your extremist, offensive words testify to your total ignorance of our country. Be sure that I will have the relevant French government authorities double the controls on tires imported by you," he warned Titan International yesterday.
Read more here.
News server Novinky.cz reports that yesterday, 20 February, was the World Day of Social Justice, an effort to draw attention to the topic of poverty and social problems. According to the EU Statistical Office, 15 % of the population of the Czech Republic is jeopardized by poverty and social exclusion, defined as suffering from material deprivation or working less than 20 % of what ordinarily constitutes a full-time work year.
"I think very few people are aware of this, but as far as poverty goes, the Czech Republic is the best off in comparison with other European Union member states. Nevertheless, I consider it important to assist groups of citizens who are at risk, using money from European projects and the state," Czech Labor and Social Affairs Minister Ludmila Müllerová told Novinky.cz.
Read more here.
ANNOUNCEMENTS and events
The conference will discuss the results of the research project ACCEPT Pluralism and will be in Brussels on 6-7 March 2013 at the Euroflat hotel. In the afternoon of 6 March one part will be in the European Parliament.
This conference is organised by the European Commission Directorate General for Regional and Urban Policy, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme, and will focus on evidence-based lessons on socio-economic inclusion for Roma communities.The conference will be also streamed on the internet. If you would like to follow it on line or join the sessions in Moldava nad Bodvou, Slovakia,in person, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more info go here.
The Launch will take place during the 24th Session of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe on 20 March 2013 in Strasbourg, France at the end of the plenary debate on the issue of social exclusion at local and regional level and will be followed by a reception and a concert, co-organised with one of the founding participants of the Alliance - the city of Strasbourg.
Registration for the 2013 Gypsy Lore Society Annual Meeting is now open. Papers on any aspect of Gypsy/Romani Studies are most welcome. Please send abstracts via e-mail attachment (maximum 500 words) to the program chair, Dr Colin Clark, email@example.com. Submissions should include the author’s name, institutional affiliation (if relevant), address, daytime telephone and e-mail address. The deadline for receipt of abstracts is May 31, 2013 and you will be notified if your paper has been accepted by June 30th, 2013. Please address all conference inquiries to Dr Colin Clark, at the address below, or call 07826068961 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) is now preparing the 2012 annual report on hate crimes. The report provides an overview of data collected on hate crimes, and of responses to hate crimes. It will be launched on 15 November, 2013 the day before International Tolerance Day.
As in previous years, ODIHR encourages submissions from non-governmental organizations and has compiled information to assist NGOs. Information should be sent to email@example.com no later than 5 April 2013 indicating in the subject line "HCR 2012 (NAME OF YOUR ORGANIZATION)". For more information about ODIHR and hate crime visit http://tandis.odihr.pl.
More information can be found here.
Sample format for collecting information on Hate Crimes can be found here.