Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion distances itself from group led by candidate for party using racist slogan
The Czech Government Agency for Social Inclusion (Agentura pro sociální začleňování - APSZ) has distanced itself from the Čonoro group, whose statutory representative and treasurer is Pavel Pöschl. During last year's local elections, Pöschl was a candidate for the "Open Town Hall Most" (Otevřená radnice Most) party, which used the slogan "Poison alone is not good enough for these pests!" on its promotional materials.
Pöschl posted the materials to social networks with the tagline "Zero tolerance for inadaptables". He recently told the media that the group has designed a project together with the APSZ to "address" the situation at the Chanov housing estate in Most, which has many Romani residents.
APSZ director David Beňák says the claim of collaboration with the Agency is untrue. "We have never discussed collaboration with that association, nor with those people, especially not those who ran in the local elections using slogans with hateful subtexts. It is not true that the group has designed some way to 'address Chanov' in collaboration with us," the director said.
"We are, however, naturally prepared to cooperate with anybody who actually is interested in addressing the issue of excluded localities," the APSZ director said. He was responding to claims made by Pöschl in the media.
"We have designed a project to address Chanov. Currently the situation is very tense, the town is advocating the idea of demolishing the prefabricated apartment buildings there and replacing them with container housing. Nobody from Chanov wants that, though, and therefore we have designed a different option in collaboration with the Agency for Social Inclusion, where we consulted on this, and we would like to attempt to advocate for this idea along with the town and to implement it," the Čonoro representative told news server E-mostecko.
Čonoro first informed the public that it was collaborating with the APSZ on 6 November 2018. "Yesterday we visited the Office of the Government of the Czech Republic and established cooperation with the Agency for Social Inclusion," the group posted to Facebook beneath a photograph of the APSZ logo.
Pöschl, according to the news server www.justice.cz, has been the treasurer of the group since 26 September 2018. Speaking to the media earlier this month, he said the group, which was first established on 29 December 2017, runs without drawing on public subsidies.
News server Romea.cz, however, has discovered that at the beginning of December 2018 the group filed an application for almost CZK 2 million [EUR 80 000] in public funding support for the operation of its Community Center. "6 December 2018 was the deadline to apply for support from the MAS Naděje o.p.s. call for tenders entitled 'Support for Social Services and Community Centers - operations - II'. Five applications were submitted," reads the website of MAS Naděje o.p.s, where the Čonoro project is listed as having applied.
In the meantime, the scandal of the election campaign by "Open Town Hall Most" in the run-up to last October's local elections has begun to be reviewed by the state prosecutor on suspicion of a racist subtext. Police closed the matter as a misdemeanor and handed it over to the Most town hall to be addressed, but the prosecutor has recently asked for the case to be handed over to them.
Pöschl was a candidate in eighth place on the party's list. Their lead candidate was Karel Novotný, who drew attention previously by remarking on social networks that "gypsies are like jellyfish - poisonous and useless."
At the time Novotný was working as Deputy Industry and Trade Minister and was a member of the Czech Social Democratic Party (ČSSD). He subsequently left that party.
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion does not support housing benefit-free zones in Liberec
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion introduces itself to Romani coordinators in South Moravia
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion: 80 % of families who left residential hotels for standard rentals still renting one year later
- Czech city with homeless evictees refused Govt Agency for Social Inclusion help, some local Roma petitioned against it
- Romani community member David Beňák now director of the Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion
- Human rights agenda, including Agency for Social Inclusion and Hate Free Culture, now under Czech Justice Minister
- Czech Government Agency for Social Inclusion has no new boss yet, temporary manager appointed from within
- Director of Czech Government Agency for Social Inclusion resigning
- Czech Government "takes note" of Agency for Social Inclusion report on 2016
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion says "training" apartments and jobs will help second-largest city
- Czech nonprofit real estate agency helps people facing discrimination find housing
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion director says both housing and social workers necessary to social housing
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion says amendments to consumer loan law will help combat exclusion
- Czech NGO whose head spreads hatred against Muslims and refugees will continue to work with Govt Agency for Social Inclusion
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion begins work with mayor who keeps attacking Roma
- Czech Govt Agency for Social Inclusion reviews local group working with Romani children after its head attacks the HateFree Culture initiative
- Czech nonprofits welcome abolition of local "housing benefit-free zones", say they made matters worse
- Woman says intercity bus driver in northern Czech town racially abused her and called for the death of all Roma before physically throwing her onto a road
- Romani residents of infamous Czech housing estate are repairing dilapidated buildings themselves with the help of the town hall
- Some volunteer civil society members of Czech Govt Roma Council protest new law on subjecting welfare benefits to collections
- Czech town cancels commission for container housing as too costly - which local opposition politicians have argued all along
- Czech town commissions construction of controversial modular housing units for Romani area, council meeting described to ROMEA TV by local assembly member
- Czech mayor gets Romani resident to endorse segregated "container housing", others still oppose it, including Architects without Borders
- Czech court hears defamation case against man who insulted a member of the Govt's Roma Council in the media
- Czech Government Agency for Social Inclusion informs ombudsman that 82 % of communities where they work are satisfied
- Czech town's project to install "container housing" on mostly-Romani housing estate published online by opposition local assembly member
- Local councillor in Czech Republic sparks outrage and petition against installation of "container housing" in Romani neighborhood
- Czech national audit says schools were not prepared for inclusion and local governments are not drawing funds for it in socially excluded localities