romea - logo
November 28, 2020

 

SEARCH
 

Equal Opportunities Party calls on Romani members of Czech Govt commission to resign

Prague, 14.6.2012 21:54, (ROMEA)

The leadership of the Equal Opportunities Party (Strana rovných příležitostí - SRP) has called on the Romani members of the Czech Government Inter-ministerial Commission for Romani Community Affairs to resign from that advisory body. SRP Vice-Chair Čeněk Růžička said the Romani members of the commission are ignoring its 15 years of ineffectual projects and that the conditions for coexistence between the Romani minority and the rest of society are not improving.

"...after thoroughly considering all aspects of this situation and the long-term influence of the Commission on the lives of Romani people in the Czech Republic calls on you, members of the Romani section of the Commission, to resign from the Commission in protest," the party leadership's statement reads. "The Commission has become an impotent administrative institution, and its Romani section in particular merely serves as a necessary prop for government projects that do not effectively address the life of Romani people in the Czech Republic, as well as a necessary prop for the Government to show to international institutions." The text was sent to the Romani representatives of Commission, the Czech Prime Minister, and the Czech Government Human Rights Commissioner.

"This Government is making it possible for politicians known for their hatred of Romani people to write legislation related to the addressing of social problems. These laws have been proposed and approved in such a way as to strengthen the antipathy of majority-society citizens toward Romani families. We are of the opinion that the real aim of the anti-social laws now adopted is to make the lives of Romani people in the Czech Republic so unpleasant that they will decide to emigrate to countries with higher levels of empathy and tolerance. The Commission is tolerating the inappropriateness of this process," the SRP declaration reads.

The Government is now getting ready to discuss augmenting the Inter-ministerial Commission. Journalist Patrik Banga has been proposed as a new member.

Czech PM Petr Nečas (Civic Democrats - ODS) met this week with representatives of the Statewide Association of Romani People in the Czech Republic to discuss the situation of Romani people in the Czech Republic and their coexistence with others. The association asked the cabinet to appoint a Special Rapporteur for Romani Affairs to manage the implementation of measures to improve the situation and oversee them. Nečas said he would take the proposal under consideration and hold further talks with the leadership of the organization.

The Statewide Association of Romani People in the Czech Republic was formed last fall. It intends to defend the interests of the Romani minority, to bring Romani organizations together and to be a partner for the Government and authorities. Well-known Romani personalities are members of the association.

Romea.cz publishes the text of the SRP's statement in full translation below:

SRP call to members of the Romani section of the Czech Government Inter-ministerial Commission on Romani Community Affairs

Members of the Presidium and the Central Council of the Equal Opportunities Party (Strana rovných příležitostí - hereinafter the SRP) discussed the current situation of Romani people in the Czech Republic at their meeting on 27 May 2012. The members take full responsibility for the following resolution.

The Czech Government Inter-ministerial Commission for Romani Community Affairs (hereinafter the Commission) is an advisory and initiatory body of the government for Romani minority matters. One of the basic priorities of the Commission is the submitting of materials and proposals to the government related to the creation and implementation of policy on Romani people with the aim of improving the lives of Romani people in the Czech Republic and helping their integration into society.

We have paid serious attention to the development of the Commission's activities over the past 15 years. Unfortunately, although it disturbs us to have to state this, the Commission is not fulfilling its basic mission. The Commission has become an impotent administrative institution, and its Romani section in particular merely serves as a necessary prop for government projects that do not effectively address the life of Romani people in the Czech Republic, as well as a necessary prop for the Government to show to international institutions. Members of the Romani section of the Commission do not have a mandate from the Romani people themselves to negotiate on their behalf at the Commission or to propose solutions to Romani-related matters.

We are convinced there can be no question that during the time the Commission has been in operation, the position of Romani people in the Czech Republic has not improved, but has continually deteriorated in the following main areas: The security of Romani families is confronted with manifestations of hysterical hatred from the side of a significant portion of the majority population. This hatred of Romani people is intensified by anti-Romani campaigns in the media. Romani people are terrified by the rise in the number of racist attacks and the discrimination they experience from local authorities and other institutions.

The unemployment level of Romani people in the Czech Republic is almost 90 %, in some places even more. Community service work projects will not address this unemployment. There is a lack of political will for more effective methods of addressing unemployment. The Commission is not proposing solutions that reflect the actual societal position of Romani people in the Czech Republic, nor is it proposing feasible solutions.

Generations of healthy Romani children are systematically being educated in classes intended for children with mental disability. The Commission, in particular its Romani section, is not sufficiently critical of the system in which Romani children are being educated. The Commission is also not following the numbers of Romani children who have been successfully reintegrated from special education into mainstream classes.

Municipal governments are intentionally pushing Romani families into ghettos. The numbers of these Romani ghettos are rising. The Commission has not done and is not doing enough to prevent such developments.

Municipalities and regions are being financed billions of crowns by the EU Structural Funds to integrate Romani families. The Commission is following neither the appropriateness of the projects so financed, nor their influence on the lives of Romani people.

This Government is making it possible for politicians known for their hatred of Romani people to write legislation related to the addressing of social problems. These laws have been proposed and approved in such a way as to strengthen the antipathy of majority-society citizens toward Romani families. We are of the opinion that the real aim of the anti-social laws now adopted is to make the lives of Romani people in the Czech Republic so unpleasant that they will decide to emigrate to countries with higher levels of empathy and tolerance. The Commission is tolerating the inappropriateness of this process.

Therefore the members of the Presidium and the Central Council of the SRP, led by their feeling of co-responsibility for the current position of Romani people in the Czech Republic, after thoroughly considering all aspects of this situation and the long-term influence of the Commission on the lives of Romani people in the Czech Republic calls on you, members of the Romani section of the Commission, to resign from the Commission in protest.

On behalf of the members of the Presidium and the Central Council of the SRP:

Štefan Tišer, party chair

Čeněk Růžička, 1st vice-chair

František Kostlán, Gwendolyn Albert, František Kostlán, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
Views: 583x

Related articles:

Tags:  

Czech republic



HEADLINE NEWS

More articles from category







..
romea - logo