Commentary: Social Exclusion is a Global Issue
The issues the Roma face in Europe are issues that many minorities around the globe face as well. There is unequal distribution of education, employment, and housing.
Poverty is rampant. People feel the prejudice against them, and it is important for us to know that this issue does not only affect the Czech Republic or the United States.
- senior at Lehigh University;
- pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics;
- sprinter on Lehigh's track and field team;
- sister of Mu Sigma Upsilon Sorority, Incorporated, the first multicultural sorority in the United States;
- plans to attend graduate school to become a physical therapist
This summer, I have the amazing opportunity to leave my home in the United States to work with the campaign for social inclusion in the Czech Republic. I have been interning with an NGO, Romea, to help with the social inclusion of the Roma people.
The Roma have faced persecution over many generations, including the mass genocide of their people during the Holocaust. Unfortunately, the Roma are still widely persecuted today due to the color of their skin and a negative media portrayal of them as criminals and thieves.
Human rights are defined as rights that inherently belong to every person, regardless of race, religion, national origin, or any other status. Every year, the United States releases a human rights report on countries around the globe, including the Czech Republic.
Romea covers such reports through their news server, Romea.cz, and the challenge arises when we see how many members of the majority group are actually willing to change their thoughts and actions in order to alleviate feelings of exclusion for minority groups. In their 2016 Human Rights Report, the US states that "Societal discrimination against the Romani population in education, housing, and employment remained a serious problem."
Very few of the socially excluded Roma participate in Czech political life. The 2016 report from the US says "There were no Romani members of parliament, cabinet ministers, or Supreme Court justices; in the regional elections, Romani candidates had no success winning office."
Without political representation and policies advocating for the respect of basic human rights for members of marginalized communities, exclusion will be difficult to address. Exclusion manifests when members of society are silenced.
The US human rights report also mentions the Czech Republic's rejection of "a bill proposed in September 2015 by the minister of human rights on compensation for persons, most of them Romani women, who were sterilized without their full consent between 1971 and 1991." However, the US has its own extensive history of practicing compulsory sterilization, and not all victims of these practices have been compensated there either, although some states have taken steps to redress the past.
Now, you may be wondering why you should care. How does this affect you?
The "-isms" - ableism, antigypsyism, racism, sexism, classism, antisemitism, ageism, heterosexism, and more - are global problems. Our fellow human beings are dying because others cannot tolerate difference.
What I want you to know is that it is okay to be different. Embrace your own culture.
Live how you want, and let others do the same. That's how people grow, learn and discover new ways to flourish.
- Slovakia: Romani family rejected by neighbors before they even move in
- Czech Justice Minister threatens to resign if SPD party joins the Government, calls it fascist, they plan to sue
- Czech MP spreads disinformation alleging that Florida school shooter was an Antifa member
- New Zealand grants asylum to family from Czech Republic with non-Romani and Romani members because of neo-Nazi death threats
- Czech Association of Roma Entrepreneurs and Associations endorses Drahoš, calls on Roma to turn out
- First round of Czech presidential elections saw low turnout in socially excluded localities
- Jan Cverčko: Romale, vote for Jiří Drahoš!
- Germany: Romani-inhabited building struck by arson, media strangely quiet
- Czech presidential candidate Horáček thanks Roma for voting, supports Drahoš in second round
- VIDEO: Czech ticket-checker assaults Romani boy, removes children from bus, police tell commuter not to film it
- More Romani figures announce their presidential favorites - still definitely not Zeman
- Greek court sentences woman who kicked Romani girl on the street to three months in prison
Tags:Exkluze, Czech republic, USA, Roma, human rights
Outgoing Czech PM backs MP who doubted Romani Holocaust, says he has apologized and his words have been "misinterpreted"7.2.2018 16:32
concentration camp at Lety u Písku, a site of the genocide of the Roma during the Second World War. When asked today whether he supports removing Okamura from his post as vice-chair of the lower house, as the Christian Democrats propose, the PM said he considers Okamura's apology to have been sufficient.
Každý diskutující musí dodržovat PRAVIDLA DISKUZE SERVERU Romea.cz. Moderátoři serveru Romea.cz si vyhrazují právo bez předchozího upozornění skrýt nevhodné příspěvky z diskuse na Romea.cz. Ty pak budou viditelné jen pro vás a vaše přátele na Facebooku. Při opakovaném porušení pravidel mohou moderátoři zablokovat zobrazování vašich příspěvků v diskusích na Romea.cz ostatním uživatelům.