ERIO'S WEEKLY E-NEWS 27-06-2014
ERIO news and activities
French President Hollande condemned these actions as “unspeakable and unjustifiable actions which strike against all the principles on which our Republic is founded”. The French interior minister, Cazeneuve, assured that “Everything possible will be done to bring the culprits to justice”. Although these comments are reassuring, they came rather late, six days after the incident occurred.
Read the full statement here
Speakers included ERIO Chair Board Ronald Lucardie, ERIO Executive Director Ivan Ivanov, ERIO Policy Officer Marta Pinto, ENAR Policy Officer Julie Pascoët, Advocacy Expert Svetoslav Naoumov, and Radio Patrin Director Orhan Galjus.
Presentations were followed by group discussions where participants developed recommendations on education, employment, housing and health advocacy strategies. The advocacy training offered our team as well as our participants the opportunity to exchange experiences, and good practice examples in terms of advocacy approaches, and establish new contacts with a view to improving the tools for the social inclusion and non-discrimination of Roma in the EU. The training was very informative and beneficial to all attendees.
You can find out more about our project here.
On Monday 23rd June 2014, ERIO attended the public conference “Fundamental Rights for Roma People” organised by the European Association for the Defense of the Human rights (AEDH), in the framework of the project INSEROM.
The project aims at producing a kit composed of a reference book, a trainer’s guide and educational video clips. The reference book is addressed to Roma communities including a diversity of profiles (settled, travelling, migrants). It is completed by a trainer’s guide addressed more specifically to trainers and volunteers working with Roma communities to help them to convey the information of the reference book and improve their interventions.
At the conference, the current Roma’s situation in several European countries (United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Spain and France) was addressed. Other issues discussed were the difficulties faced by civil society on the field, and the identification of good practices. Actions of the European institutions for Roma inclusion were also reviewed.
Ivan Ivanov, ERIO’s Executive Director, as an invited speaker, recalled that when ERIO started its work more than 10 years ago, the general knowledge and awareness about Roma issues at the European level was very poor. Today, the various bodies at the European and national levels are better informed about the Roma condition, but the main issue is still to implement efficient policies, he emphasised. After the development of the National Strategies by the 28 members states (MS), the adoption of the Council Recommendation is a strong step forward. It is the first legal instrument available at the European level for Roma inclusion which can be used by civil society to hold MS accountable. Mr Ivanov listed several reasons for the current low efficiency of some policies for Roma inclusion. He recalled that still too few Roma were involved in policy design and implementation, which is not only the EC’s responsibility but also civil society’s. Moreover, he asserted that the current discrimination against Roma was hindering all the policies implementation at the European level and consequently a stronger transversal approach should be carried out to address this issue.
Every country page holds information on allocated funds under the different Structural Funds over 2007-2013 funding period as well as provisions foreseen for 2014-2020
Every Member State, except Malta, has drawn up either a National Strategy for Roma Integration or a set of measures concerning the integration of their Roma populations. Each country has its own view and approach on how to improve the integration of its Roma populations and how to access and manage EU funds for vulnerable people, including Roma.
Funds for projects that help improve Roma integration across Europe are allocated in two ways: either under the European Commission’s direct management or in the form of shared management between the EU and Member States.
In this new Webpage the EC has developed country pages offering information on strategies, contact points, Managing Authorities, country factsheets and how EU funds can be used for Roma inclusion.
Each country page contains the information about allocated funds under the different Structural Funds over 2007-2013 funding period and provisions for next one (2014-2020). Moreover, the contact of the Managing Authorities of the different Structural Funds allocated in each country is published. This Webpage also provides a layman´s guide to EU funding with several frequently asked questions .
Read more here
20/06/2014 - In the United States, women of color frequently experience the double burden of discrimination. They are discriminated against by race and also by gender. The same applies to Roma women in East-Central Europe. And sexism imposes its own double burden, for Roma women must confront not only the prejudices of society as a whole but also discrimination within traditional Roma families.
I met Ilona Zambo in 1993, after she'd already set up her Gypsy Mothers' Association. She was focusing at the time on family and social welfare laws that discriminated against Roma women, and she was also hoping to adapt affirmative action to the Hungarian context. She was a powerful advocate of women and children when many organizations focused on Roma men. When re-interviewing her last May, I was surprised to learn that her advocacy did not come so much from her own experience as those of other Roma women she had met.
Read more here
18/06/2014 - Somewhere in a hospital in Paris tonight, a Roma teenager lies in a coma fighting for his life. Accounts suggest that the boy, known to us only as Darius, was accused of burglary by residents of a poverty-stricken public housing development in Pierefitte-sur-Sienne; they subsequently abducted him, beat him into a coma in a basement, and dumped his body in a shopping trolley.
President François Hollande has called the attack “unspeakable and unjustifiable,” and Prime Minister Manuel Valls also condemned the perpetrators. Le Monde, the leading French daily, characterized the attack as part of a culture of score-settling in a poor community that scorns the police. But it also saw the violence, after a new Roma group had established an encampment in the area, as the outcome of several years of failed public policy that has “perpetuated Roma poverty, and fueled a latent racism towards them in French society.”
Read more here
18/06/2014 - A Romanian teenager of Roma ethnicity was recently the victim of an attack in France and is currently struggling to survive after being admitted to a hospital. The Romanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Titus Corlatean recently said that it’s disturbing that the Romanian Embassy learned about this incident from the press, and not from the French authorities.
“One thing that is disturbing me, as a Foreign Minister, is that our Embassy finds out from the press what happened, and not from the French authorities,” said Corlatean on local TV station Realitatea TV, reports Agerpres. He also said that the reason why the teenager was beaten is not of importance, adding that, if he broke the law, there are state institutions to sanction him.
Read more here
At least 13 people died (3 children among them) tens of houses were destroyed, big areas were flooded and thousands of people lost their property. This happened only for several hours in Thursday and Friday.
The disaster affected hardly Roma people. Nevertheless, only few hours after it, Roma volunteers joint the efforts of entire society to help the victims and to bring a hope.
21/06/2014 - Izmir Roman Association head Abdullah Cistir said 'This will be the first time the Roma community produce a newspaper in Turkey.' Turkey's Roma population have started printing their first newspaper in the country. The 8 Nisan (8 April) newspaper has been named after the date celebrated as World Roma Day.
Izmir Roman Association head Abdullah Cistir spoke to Al Jazeera Turk on behalf of his community based in the western coastal city, saying that he hoped the newspaper would information awareness among Izmir's Roma residents. He also aid that he hopes the newspaper will explain the social and economic plight of his community in search for solutions.
Read more here
The Romani, not to be confused with the Romanian nation or people, are a diasporic ethnicity more widely known as “gypsies.” Throughout the world they are variously known as Rom, Roma, Romane, Cigáni and Gitano, just to name a few.
In this presentation about the Romani and the Holocaust, Ian Hancock, professor of English and linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin, and director of the Romani Studies program and the Romani Archives and Documentation Center, estimates that the Holocaust claimed anywhere between 500,000 and 1.5 million Romani lives. The Romani people refer to this tragedy as the Porrajmos, or “the Devouring.”
A Romani-born British citizen, activist, and scholar, Hancock has done more than anyone to raise awareness about the Romani people during World War II.
Watch this Library Channel presentation of Porrajmos: The Romani and the Holocaust with Ian Hancock – Holocaust Living History, a Library Channel presentation here
ANNOUNCEMENTS and events
19 June 2014 - 6 July 2014 | Mon – Fri, 11.00 am – 6.00 pm | Admission free
This exhibition starts from the premise that we can only accurately understand the Roma if we make a conscious effort to stretch beyond our historically constructed prejudices about them. Roma – from ‘extra’ to ‘ordinary’ does not cover up the history of oppression that has resulted in negative and distorted images of Roma people in the media, both in the UK and in Eastern Europe. At the same time it seeks to show how Romani lives are not so different from those of everyone else, with a focus on the banal and everyday, rather than the sensational.
Read more here