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August 21, 2019
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Ghetto

New benches at Luník IX in Košice, Slovakia. (2019) (PHOTO: Jarmila Vaňová)
New benches at Luník IX in Košice, Slovakia. (2019) (PHOTO: Jarmila Vaňová)

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Czech Public Health Institute focuses on Romani children's health, odds are against those in social exclusion

16.7.2018 5:33 The health of Romani people is worse than that of the majority population in the Czech Republic. This fact is caused primarily, for socially excluded Romani people, by their insufficient awareness about healthful lifestyles, their lower educations, and their lower incomes.  full story

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videoMichal Miko to the Czech Regional Development Minister: Live in a container yourself, then we will see what you think of it

21.4.2018 11:51 The proposal of the Czech Regional Development Minister to build 55 000 "container" units of housing has outraged various civic activists. Michal Miko, project coordinator for the Slovo 21, z.s. NGO, has taken an unequivocally negative stance on the issue: "The fact that the Government wants to adopt a law making it possible to build 'container' apartment units is unacceptable to me as a civic activist."  full story

Czech Govt to build 55 000 "cells" for the poor, Platform for Social Housing says thousands of new ghettos will result

30.3.2018 20:28 According to a new proposal from the Czech Regional Development Ministry, the Czech Government wants to build a new type of accommodation for the country's impoverished inhabitants, so-called "social homes". There could be as many as 55 000 "cells" involved.

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Czech Caritas says changes to housing benefit may launch an avalanche of homelessness

29.11.2017 8:16 Representatives of Caritas Czech Republic are criticizing recent restrictions on housing benefits for people living in so-called areas with an "increased incidence of undesirable phenomena" and in residential hotels because the new rules could lead to an increased number of homeless persons. The organization is one of the biggest aiding those in need.  full story

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Head of Czech development aid organization notices situation in Romani ghettos all but unchanged

28.7.2017 9:21 "Always, naturally, somebody can be found who doesn't care for this part of our work. Even in that aspect, however, the situation is changing. Previously the absolute majority of people had a simplified reaction: 'Why, for God's sake, are you aiding the gypsies? It would be better to go to Africa to aid the black people.' Today most people comprehend that this is a problem that must be solved," said Šimon Pánek, a former student leader of Czechoslovakia's Velvet Revolution who is director of the People in Need development organization in an interview for news server Deník.cz marking its 25th anniversary.  full story

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Czech survey finds 45 % of Romani ghetto residents don't trust police, 42 % do

26.4.2017 10:30 Roughly 45 % of the Romani residents of the so-called excluded localities do not trust the Czech Police. Two-thirds of those surveyed believe police officers have prejudices against Romani people.  full story

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Vice-chair of Czech party says new social housing law unnecessary, Romani activist disagrees

23.2.2017 11:01 Czech MP Markéta Pekarová Adamová, the vice-chair of the opposition TOP 09 party, was a guest of Czech Radio's "Interview Plus" program on 16 February. During her appearance she expressed her reservations about the social housing bill that the current Government promised, in its program declaration, to approve.  full story

Czech town "celebrates" 10th anniversary of Romani evictions and creation of ghetto with fireworks

4.10.2016 12:14 Romani tenants of "container housing" in the locality of Poschlá on the outskirts of the Czech town of Vsetín would like to move away, ideally back into town. "We are from Vsetín, we want to remain living there and we would like to have the same conditions as everybody else," Marián Tulej, who administers the housing units, told journalists yesterday.  full story

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Czech Gov't Agency for Social Inclusion wants to focus more on activation and community work

10.11.2015 23:46 The Czech Government Agency for Social Inclusion is preparing to open up centers in three regions in January. Branches of the Agency should open in Ostrava, Prague, and Ústí nad Labem.  full story

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Bulgarian Helsinki Committee: Opportunistic politicians evicting Roma for political gain

13.10.2015 20:39 On 9 October, Kaloyan Stanev of the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee published an opinion piece through the Open Society Foundations about the evictions of Roma that have been ongoing there. He describes police giving families one hour to leave their dwellings before they are bulldozed.  full story

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Czech town segregating Roma in housing and at school - mayor says integration will only happen over his "dead body"

29.9.2015 18:18 Milan Volf, Mayor of the Czech town of Kladno, says it is impossible to move those living in the town's excluded localities into regular apartment buildings and that he believes the per-child allowances offered by the state are like a business opportunity that is motivating families in ghettos to grow exponentially larger. He made those remarks in an interview on 23 September for news server E15.cz  full story

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France: Roma immigrants evicted, travelling community kept from halting

24.8.2015 21:22 British newspaper The Independent reported on 16 August that a shantytown known as Samaritain in La Courneuve suburb north of Paris was slated for demolition "within days". The 80 families living there, most of them Romani, were not scheduled for rehousing by the local council  full story

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videoBulgaria: Romani dwellings demolished in Varna

21.8.2015 22:13 Radio FOCUS in Bulgaria reports that houses built illegally by their Romani occupants in the Maksuda quarter of the Mladost municipal department of the city of Varna began undergoing demolition yesterday. Residents reportedly threw rocks at police and attempted to attack them during the demolition.  full story

Czech Gov't plans program to demolish condemned ghetto buildings without EU strings

21.7.2015 23:41 The Czech Regional Development Ministry is designing a program to aid municipalities with demolishing ruined buildings. "The demolition of these buildings is a partial contribution to addressing the situation in socially excluded localities," Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (Czech Social Democratic Party) said today during a visit to Ústí nad Labem.  full story

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Czech Republic: NGO starts risky recording studio on edge of Romani ghetto

18.7.2015 18:00 On the border between Brno's Romani ghetto and the "normal" city center, a recording studio full of energy and symbolism is slated to begin growing on the premises of a former gaming room. "There are other ways to play" is one of the slogans accompanying the studio's vision.  full story

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Bulgarian NGO to sue over ongoing forced demolition of Romani homes in Garmen

8.7.2015 20:49 News server novinite.com reports that the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee (BHC) has issued a press release stating its objections to the ongoing forced demolition of buildings in the "Kremikovtsi" Romani quarter of the village of Garmen. The 29 June demolition rendered four families with a total of 15 children homeless and more demolitions are scheduled for 13 July, according to the Amalipe Center for Interethnic Dialogue and Tolerance, which also reports that 124 of the quarter's 134 houses are slated for demolition.  full story

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Commentary: Czech Labor Minister and ombud at odds over housing benefit law, mayor says state administration is "collapsing"

25.6.2015 19:35 The threat of tens of thousands of new homeless people, including families with children, ending up "on the streets" over the next few months has forced Czech Government politicians to re-evaluate the interpretation of an amendment to the law on aid to those in material distress adopted last fall by legislators, but it is not yet clear what the next steps will be. Only one thing is clear: Based on the developments of recent months and weeks, there is no guarantee that legislators will adopt another amendment on this issue in time that will be good enough to not be changed again several months from now.  full story

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Czech Chamber of Commerce considers local branch's call for Army to patrol Roma unacceptable

23.6.2015 17:46 An "Open Call" demanding a solution to the "negative immigration of inadaptables" and the deployment of the Czech Army to patrol Romani residents in excluded localities was published several days ago by the District Chamber of Commerce (OHK) in the town of Ústí nad Labem. News server Romea.cz reported yesterday that the leadership of the national Chamber of Commerce of the Czech Republic did not respond to our questions regarding the "Open Call".  full story

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Czech town's chamber of commerce wants to deploy the Army against Roma

22.6.2015 19:57 The District Chamber of Commerce (Okresní hospodářská komora - OHK) in the Czech town of Ústí nad Labem has published an "Open Call to Local Politicians and Citizens" that reads as follows: "In Ústí nad Labem and other towns we are threatened by a demographic catastrophe that may already be unavoidable. We must have the courage to describe this problem and propose solutions."  full story

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