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May 25, 2020
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Jarmila Balážová

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Romani people at the Chánov housing estate in the Czech Republic are sewing face masks due to the shortage. (2020) (PHOTO:  Aver Roma)
Romani people at the Chánov housing estate in the Czech Republic are sewing face masks due to the shortage. (2020) (PHOTO: Aver Roma)

Czech Government Human Rights Commissioner: "The situation is serious"

Prague, 10.7.2012 20:11, (Romano vod'i) Monika Šimůnková is the Czech Government Human Rights Commissioner. Right at the start of her appointment, she was handicapped by the fact that Czech Prime Minister Petr Nečas had taken several months to find a replacement for the previous Commissioner, Michael Kocáb. The nonprofit sector and some professionals were very circumspect in their response to her appointment. She was cautious too, long refusing to give interviews or make statements on matters, until even some journalists began to consider her a “puppet”. In recent months her activity has significantly intensified – or perhaps it is just more visible now, who knows? In any event, she was the only bureaucrat or political figure who considered it important to make a public statement about the case in which it was revealed that a boy from Břeclav had told lies that misled the entire nation for several weeks, harming the reputation of the Romani community as a result. The powers of the Human Rights Commissioner are significantly restricted, and each statement she makes must be in line with the Office of the Government’s media strategy and undergo a kind of “approval” process.  full story

Jarmila Balážová: Havel will always be a symbol of freedom for me!

Prague, 19.12.2011 15:41, (ROMEA) I learned of the death of Václav Havel yesterday from my younger sister, who called from Brno. "Look online," she said, "Havel has passed away."  full story

Commentary: The warning of Nový Bor and Rumburk

Prague, 24.8.2011 0:12, (Jarmila Balážová) The attacks recently committed by Romani individuals in Nový Bor and then Rumburk are revealing several realities to us all which unfortunately were suspected long ago. Not only were these facts anticipated, but many experts, both non-Roma and Roma, have been trying to draw attention to them for a long time.  full story

Czech celebrities on why they will demonstrate against neo-Nazis 1 May in Brno

Prague, 1.5.2011 2:34, (ROMEA) During a recent broadcast of the radio discussion program "Studio STOP", moderator Jarmila Balážová focused on the upcoming civic blockade and other activities organized by those protesting in Brno against neo-Nazis marching through the streets of that city. Neo-Nazis have been traveling to Brno on 1 May regularly and selected the Czech Republic's second-largest city for their activities this year after holding rallies in Nový Bydžov and Krupka. Jarmila Balážová interviewed her guests not only about the upcoming blockade, but also about other activities being planned in Brno, the situation in Nový Bydžov and Krupka, and similar actions against neo-Nazis abroad.  full story

2011 Czech census offers option of listing two nationalities

Prague, 28.2.2011 14:19, (ROMEA) The "Census of People, Homes and Apartments" in the Czech Republic, one of the most extensive statistical determinations ever conducted here, is just around the corner and is expected to produce a great deal of valuable data which cannot be effectively determined in any other way. The census will begin at the stroke of midnight between the 25th and 26th of March.  full story

Controversial Czech town leadership supports welfare restriction amendment

Nový Bydžov, 14.2.2011 17:12, (ROMEA) Today in the town of Nový Bydžov, representatives of 48 towns from around the Czech Republic have been meeting since 10 AM in the local Jirásek Theater to discuss the problems they are experiencing with socially "inadaptable" people. The mayors were invited by the Nový Bydžov leadership to present their experiences and their proposals for solutions to these problems.  full story

EU platform on immigrant and ethnic minority integration discusses ICT

Brno, 18.1.2011 17:05, (ROMEA) Yesterday in Brno a workshop was convened as part of a series held in six cities across the EU. The basic topic of discussion was whether and how new technology might assist the integration of immigrants and ethnic minorities into majority societies. What are the examples of good practice ICT projects for improving inter-ethnic relations abroad? Which practices have had success in the Czech Republic?  full story

Czech PM and President reportedly did not discuss Human Rights Commissioner

Prague, 10.1.2011 14:32, (ROMEA) The name of the next Czech Government Human Rights Commissioner and the timing of the next appointment to that post remains unknown. Even though Czech PM Petr Nečas has already delayed the appointment of a replacement for the last commissioner, Michael Kocáb, several times, activists and nonprofits evidently cannot expect to see a new one appointed any time soon.  full story

Czech PM chairs Roma advisory body, says Human Rights Commissioner to stay

Prague, 25.11.2010 19:22, (ROMEA) On Tuesday 23 November, the newest incarnation of the Czech Government Council for Roma Minority Affairs met for the first time in Hrzánský Palace in Prague. The Council's newly appointed members had been waiting for this first session with great impatience, as the government has not yet appointed a new Human Rights Commissioner. It was not clear until the last minute whether the meeting would actually be attended by Czech PM Petr Nečas, but in the end the PM made it and, according to several Council members, participated quite actively.  full story

Interview with Michael Kocab: Decade of Roma Inclusion under the Czech baton

Prague, 6.7.2010 17:28, (Romano Vod'i) The Czech Republic will be taking up the presidency of the Decade of Roma Inclusion at the same time as the government is closing its Human Rights and Minorities Ministry. What does the country plan for the presidency? Jarmila Balážová has interviewed Czech Human Rights Commissioner Michael Kocab for Romano voďi magazine.  full story

Gabal: Attack in Ostrava was evidently the work of extremists

Ostrava, 16.3.2010 23:04, (ROMEA) According to sociologist Ivan Gabal, the recent attack in the Bedřiška quarter of Ostrava was most probably the work of extremists. Gabal made his remarks in an interview for the journal Romano voďi, which will be published at the end of March. News server publishes the interview in full below.  full story

Extremists heading for the EP

Prague, 5.5.2009 17:37, (MF Dnes) Yesterday the outgoing government of Mirek Topolánek approved its "Strategy for the Fight against Extremism". Many of those who are the targets of recent right-wing extremism are thinking, "Finally!" Their nerves have been tested in recent months on an almost weekly basis by the sheer number of marches and demonstrations by the promoters of Mr Vandas, Vávra, Sedláček and others.  full story

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