Church charity to offer help to Czech Romanies moved from Vsetin
The Czech Catholic Charity will offer help to municipalities to which Romany families were moved from the town of Vsetin, charity spokesman Jan Oulik told CTK today.
Under mayor Jiri Cunek (Christian Democrats, KDU-CSL), Vsetin moved Romany families from a dilapidated house in the town's centre last October. Some of the Romanies now live in container flats on the outskirts of the town, while others were moved to dilapidated houses in different Moravian regions. The step caused much controversy.
As Cunek was elected Christian Democrat leader and appointed Deputy Prime Minister in the centre-right coalition government of Mirek Topolanek, he stepped down as Vsetin mayor. He was replaced by Kvetoslava Othova (KDU-CSL) who is also head of Vsetin Charity.
Othova and Vaclav Keprt, head of Archdiocese Charity from Olomouc, north Moravia, plan to visit the houses in which the Romanies now live.
"We want to see the situation by ourselves because media published a lot of information but also disinformation," Keprt said.
Keprt said they wanted to see how the families live and what repairs their houses need. They also plan to address the mayors of the given municipalities and offer them their own experience from work with Romanies.
Othova said she appreciated that Minister without Portfolio Dzamila Stehlikova wanted to help by starting a fund-raising. However, Othova said the idea was unfortunate. Stehlikova has already withdrawn her idea for a fund-raising following criticism.
Othova said that the problem of poor families, mainly Romanies, is a social issue requiring cooperation of legislation, state bodies, civil service, local authorities and NGOs.
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