Czech Trade Inspection Authority investigating firms leasing apartments at Janov housing estate
The long-term experience of Romani apartment-seekers in the town of Litvínov is unequivocal: Apartments are only available for them to lease at the Janov housing estate. Over the past few years a ghetto has gradually been created there.
Local self-appointed "decent citizens" are now protesting the situation and threatening another "small-scale civil war" like in 2008. "Some companies offering rentals in Litvínov exclude Romani individuals or families a priori, without grounds, from consideration as tenants without ever learning anything more about them. All it takes is for someone to be Romani and the company will reduce its offer to apartments at Janov at the very most. Many clients have testified to this experience, and that is the reason we have submitted a motion in this matter to the Czech Trade Inspection Authority, " says Ondřej Kocur of the Společný život (Common Life) nonprofit organization; news server Romea.cz will report on the results of the investigation when they become available.
Kocur does not consider the recent petition addressed by non-Romani residents of Janov to Czech PM Bohuslav Sobotka about the Romani residents to be a solution. "The wording of that petition assigns collective blame and risks repeating the anti-Romani attacks of 2008," he says. "It also pits the self-proclaimed 'decent citizens' against the 'gypsies', which is sad."
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