Weekly news


ERIO news and activities

* ERIO paper "The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU and the Roma"
25/03/2014 - This paper identifies violations of the Articles contained in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union in relation to Roma people. Where a violated right is identified, specific examples of how that right is violated are provided. Further, recommendations are given with the intention to prevent future violations of the fundamental rights of both Roma EU citizens and residents as contained within the Charter.

You can read the full paper on our website here

OTHER news

* NGO says tackling discrimination ahead of EU elections must be a 'priority'
Sarah Isal explains why there's not a great deal to celebrate this international day for the elimination of racial discrimination.

21/03/2014 - Today we are celebrating international day for the elimination of racial discrimination. Unfortunately, from an anti-discrimination and equality perspective, there is not much to celebrate.

It will not come as a surprise that for black people, Roma, Muslims and migrants from non-EU countries living in Europe, discrimination continues to be a major obstacle when looking for a job, and even once in employment. For women with a minority or migrant background, it's even worse. This is evident in the European network against racism's latest shadow report on racism and discrimination in employment in Europe. The ongoing financial and economic crisis which Europe has been facing for the last six years, coupled with the lack of social investment, has not made the situation any better. It has worsened discrimination against minorities and migrants and increased the employment gap between the latter and the majority population. Migrants and minorities already face discrimination when they're applying for jobs. For example, in the United Kingdom, people with foreign sounding names are a third less likely to be shortlisted for jobs than people with white British sounding names.

Read more here
* To make European health fairer, answer the needs of Roma
By Maja Saitovic Jovanovic
23/03/2014 - Like all Europeans, we represent the patients, caregivers, and families—as well as the doctors, nurses, and paramedics—who make up Europe’s health systems. Yet on average, we will die ten years earlier than most Europeans.We are less vaccinated, have fewer opportunities for good nutrition, and experience higher rates of illness. In some countries, six times as many of our infants do not make it to childhood. If they do, they will have had more infections and diseases than other groups living in similar economic conditions. We are Europe’s 12 million Roma—the youngest, largest, and most disadvantaged ethnic group in Europe today.

Roma are socially marginalized, with prejudice and discrimination marking our everyday lives. Many of us live in poverty. Both circumstances contribute to worse health outcomes. When we need to seek health services, many of us cannot because we do not have identity documents or transportation. For those who can, the discrimination and exclusion that we face in our daily lives does not disappear at the door of the doctor’s office.

Read more here

* Toronto filmmakers document Romani Holocaust
By Ron Csillag, Special to The CJN

27/03/2014 - The chilling stories ring familiar even to the casual student of the Holocaust: Deportations, beatings, cattle cars, torture, mass shootings, tattooed forearms. Except these are not Jews speaking, but members of today’s most persecuted ethnic group in Europe.

The Roma, commonly, though not always pejoratively, referred to as Gypsies, even have their own word for it. They may cite the “Holocaust,” as many other non-Jewish survivors do, but their term for their war-era nightmare is “Porrajmos,” meaning “devouring.” It can also mean “rape.” Once stereotyped as hot-blooded musicians and fortune-tellers, and romanticized as Europe’s noble savages, Europe’s 12-15 million Roma and their subgroups today face brutal discrimination in housing, jobs and education. In many countries, they are ghettoized, denied services, face physical violence and pushed to the margins. They are then vilified as thieves and vagrants.

Read more here
* Finland: Widespread Support for Legislative Proposals from Cultural Counsellor and Wandering Gypsy Veijo Baltzar at the Conscience of Europe - Conference on 18–19 March 2014
The Finnish Association for Arts and Culture Drom held the international Conscience of Europe conference in the Annex Building of the Finnish Parliament on 18–19 March 2014. The proposals for laws to reform European policies of multiculturalism presented at the conference by Cultural Counsel or Veijo Baltzar, chairman of Drom, received widespread support. Support was expressed by the participating decision-makers, representatives of minorities and the majority, and young people. Veijo Baltzar calls for true egalitarianism and equitableness instead of so-called equality and tolerance. He maintains that Europe does not recognize the multicultural dimension in education, law, administration or political decision-making, and he proposes minority quotas for working life, administration and teaching in institutes of higher education.

Read more here

* Scholar, political activist to discuss Romani Holocaust April 10

26/03/2014 - Romani scholar, linguist and political advocate Ian Hancock will discuss “Porrajmos: The Romani Holocaust” at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10, at the Holocaust Museum and Learning Center, 12 Millstone Campus Drive.

“Porrajmos” is the Romani (Gypsy) term for the Holocaust; it means “the devouring.” As many as 1.5 million Romani were murdered by the Nazis in their genocidal effort to rid Europe of those deemed inferior or degenerate. Like Jewish populations, Sinti and Roma were denied citizenship, isolated, confined to ghettos and sent to death camps, most notably Auschwitz.

Read more here

*UK: Anti-fascist march through London includes Romani representatives
By voj, Roma Community Care initiative, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

In the upcoming elections to the European Parliament, a big role will evidently be played by how the candidates position themselves on the question of the threat from the ultra-right. Speaking during a meeting on the occasion of an anti-fascist march in London on 22 March, Ladislav Baláž, chair of the British-Romani association Europe Roma International, said everyone must be prepared to fight resurgent fascism in society.  

Baláž also said that Romani people intend to gain a voice in the field of politics that will correspondingly reflect the position of this newly-forming nation of 10 million people now living in all of the states of Europe. "We call on the government of Great Britain not to turn Romani immigrants into scapegoats. We are part of creating a better society," Baláž concluded, according to information from the Roma Community Care initiative.

Read more here
* Serbia: McDonald’s fined for discriminating against Roma
ČTK, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

The Nicefoods restaurants company, which operates the McDonald’s fast food chain in Serbia, must pay a fine for not letting Romani children into one of its restaurants. The Serbian press agency, Tanjug, reports that a court in Novi Sad handed down the decision last week. The firm must pay 100 000 Serbian dinars (EUR 867). The verdict has yet to take effect.
"Nicefoods restaurants respects this decision... but will take advantage of its right to appeal," the company said in a statement. The firm rejects all of the charges.

The incident occurred on 10 July 2012 when security guards at a McDonald’s restaurant are said to have forbidden several Romani children from entering. In addition to the fine for the company itself, the boss of the firm, Tomaš Rogač, must pay an additional statutory penalty.

Read more here


* EU Grants on Improving Social Integration and Employability of Disadvantaged Persons (incl. Roma and Travelers)

27/03/2014 - European Union (EU) along with Government of Republic of Turkey Ministry of Labor and Social Security jointly invite grant applications on ‘Improving Social Integration and Employability of Disadvantaged Persons’ under Human Resources Development Operational Program (HRD OP) IPA Component 4. The major objective of the call is to increase social integration and/or employability of disadvantaged persons, facilitate their access to labor market, and eliminate barriers for their entrance into labor market.

Deadline: 10 June 2014

Read more here

* Advocacy Manager

The Roma Initiatives Office is seeking qualified candidates for the position of Advocacy Manager.
Application deadline: April 6, 2014

Read more here

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