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Slovak PM heavily criticized for his comments about minorities

Bratislava, Slovakia, 28.2.2013 23:48, (ROMEA) Representatives of the European People's Party and the socialist faction at the EP, as well as representatives of national minorities in Slovakia, are criticizing Slovak PM Robert Fico for saying that minorities in his country are trying to extort the state through minority rights. Fico said yesterday that ethnic minorities, minority opinion-holders and national minorities are looking for handouts while refusing to meet their obligations to the state. He insisted that these practices must change and that Slovaks did not establish an independent state in order to privilege minorities.  full story

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Czech Republic: Good and bad examples of helping the poor

Prague, 21.2.2013 18:47, (ROMEA) News server Novinky.cz reports that yesterday, 20 February, was the World Day of Social Justice, an effort to draw attention to the topic of poverty and social problems. According to the EU Statistical Office, 15 % of the population of the Czech Republic is jeopardized by poverty and social exclusion, defined as suffering from material deprivation or working less than 20 % of what ordinarily constitutes a full-time work year.  full story

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Czech Republic: Romani NGO founder says his trial proved nothing

Karlovy Vary, 21.2.2013 17:50, (ROMEA) Ladislav Bílý, who is appealing a verdict sentencing him to six years in prison for alleged subsidy fraud, has provided news server Romea.cz an essential statement on the case. Bílý made the statement as part of online discussions posted beneath the articles on Romea.cz about the verdict and in discussions posted to social networking sites. Some discussants believe Bílý misused the finances of the Romani Civic Association in Karlovy Vary, bu he denies those charges in his statement.  full story

Czech Republic: New advice bureau to replace defunct Romani NGO

Karlovy Vary, 20.2.2013 20:57, (ROMEA) News server iDNES.cz reports that the recently appealed conviction of Ladislav Bílý, the leader of the Romani Civic Association (Romské občanské sdružení) in Karlovy Vary, has now left a gap in the services available free of charge there, but the counseling center that operated for years in the association's offices should be replaced by a similar facility within half a year. The Prague-based leadership of the Association of Citizens' Advice Bureaus (Asociace občanských poraden - AOP) is already taking action to provide substitute services.  full story

Czech subsidies fall for nonprofit social work, rise for sports

Prague, 20.2.2013 19:43, (ROMEA) A recent analysis of the financing of nonprofit organizations in the Czech Republic shows that subsidies for nonprofit organizations focused on employment and social affairs have fallen in recent years, while those available for groups involved in physical education have risen. In 2009, CZK 3.55 billion made its way to nonprofits involved in social issues and increasing employment, but in 2011 just CZK 3.09 billion did, even as the total amount of subsidies to nonprofits overall rose during that period from CZK 10.18 to CZK 10.86 billion. During that period a higher share of those subsidies each year has been dedicated to groups involved in physical education.  full story

Attila Lakatos (PHOTO: http://minap.hu)

Attila Lakatos: Romani people must be given work

Budapest, Hungary, 18.2.2013 0:01, (ROMEA) News server Českápozice.cz has published an interview with Attila Lakatos, a Romani leader from the impoverished district of Borsod in northeastern Hungary. News server Romea.cz publishes it in full translation below.  full story

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Commentary: NGO war breaks out in Czech Republic

Prague, 15.2.2013 1:25, (ROMEA) "When People in Need, during the worst moment of this crisis at the residential hotel, when there was a risk that people's children would be taken into state care, released a lie to the media claiming that the residential hotel occupants had rejected 20 apartments, they crushed the faith of the people they were collaborating with, as well as the overall faith of the public in NGOs. At the same time, this organization showed that its media image and the provision of an alibi to its allies at the town hall, from which its grant money flows, is more important to it than are human lives and a good resolution to a crisis situation," reads a recent declaration issued by the Housing for All (Bydlení pro všechny) initiative. The abysmal situation of the Romani people in Ústí nad Labem has drawn attention to the deep antagonisms between those whom we have become used to assigning, in a too-simplified way, into apparently clear categories such as "non-governmental organizations" or "activists".  full story

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Czech Republic: Ostrava starts social housing program

Ostrava, 12.2.2013 22:26, (ROMEA) Czech Television reports that the first families enrolled in a social housing program in the town of Ostrava have received keys to their new apartments from the town. As long as they follow the rules and send their children to school, the town will assist them.  full story

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Commentary: Slovakia's TV Markíza misinforms viewers about "activation jobs"

Detva, Slovensko, 9.2.2013 19:22, (ROMEA) In the Czech Republic they've elected a president. Lawsuits are being planned against the Slovak President. In Syria the murder continues. In Somalia 29 000 children have died of hunger, while another 300 000 are expected to die there soon. The world is spinning in a crazy dance and the economic crisis is conducting the music, but Slovakia lives for its own domestic problems. No one here is much interested in the war in Syria or famine somewhere in Africa.  full story

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Czech Republic: Social Darwinists humiliating the poor

Prague, 8.2.2013 19:25, (ROMEA) The situation with respect to housing and work for impoverished people in the Czech Republic is serious. Social housing practically does not exist here. There is often not enough work for middle-class people, to say nothing of the socially vulnerable, be they Romani or "white".  full story

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Czech fans spread rumors about Romani football subsidy

Most, 3.1.2013 15:58, (ROMEA) The Mostecký deník daily has reported that several fans of the Football Academy in the Czech town of Most have been spreading allegations that a local Romani association is benefiting unfairly from municipal financing. The civic association Aver Roma (Jiní Romové - Other Roma), which is in its second year of taking care of youth from the Chánov housing estate who have football talent, rejects the charge that the town hall is "pouring lots of money" into its work.  full story

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