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October 17, 2018
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Czech Republic

Czech expenditure on aid to those in material distress lowest for the last six years

26.7.2018 8:30 Expenditures on the set of welfare benefits known in the Czech Republic as "aid to those in material distress" have significantly fallen for the fourth year in a row and are at their lowest levels in six years. The number of persons receiving assistance from the state is also declining.  full story

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Czech PM says Government not satisfied with pace at which EU funds are being drawn

25.7.2018 17:22 The Czech Government is not satisfied with how much EU money the Czech state is drawing and must dedicate more attention to the process than has been paid so far. Speaking at a press conference after a meeting of the Council for the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), Czech PM Andrej Babiš (ANO) made the announcement today.  full story

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Now that evictees are housed, Czech local government attacks NGOs and the poor

25.7.2018 12:20 The last remaining evictees from two closed residential hotels have finally moved out of the gym at a school in the excluded locality of Předlice and into rental housing. After their previous contracts were not extended, 25 tenants evicted from the Modrá residential hotel in the Střekov quarter of Ústí nad Labem ended up living in the gym temporarily at the beginning of July.
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Czech landlord pressured to leave Civic Democratic Party for trafficking in poverty, he denies the accusation

25.7.2018 5:59 Martin Kuba, the chair of the South Bohemian regional association of the Civic Democratic Party (ODS), has met with his party colleague, Jan Zedník, seeking an explanation of Zedník's business enterprises leasing apartment units in socially excluded localities. News server lidovky.cz reports that Kuba has proposed cancelling Zedník's party membership.  full story

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Independent Romani candidate collecting signatures to run for Czech Senate

23.7.2018 7:26 Petr Jano wants to become a senator representing the district of Chomutov. Like all other independent candidates, he needs to collect 1 000 petition signatures by 31 July 2018 to qualify for applying to run on the ballot.  full story

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Young Czech journalist: School didn't teach me not to generalize, I had to learn that on my own

22.7.2018 13:10 Jakub Čech seems to be the incarnation of an "old soul" in the body of a teenager. Many people admire him for the constancy and toughness with which he has, since primary school, been fighting a dysfunctional or malfunctioning state administration, while others find him annoying.  full story

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Analysis finds collections increasing in Czech Republic, affordable housing lacking

21.7.2018 9:41 The growing number of collections proceedings, unaffordable housing and the unequal positions of men and women are currently the most burning problems of Czech society, according to the annual National Report of the Czech Social Watch coalition. Authors of the analysis held a press conference on 19 July to warn that the strategic document UN Agenda 2030, which calls for the fulfillment of aims for sustainable development, are being ignored.  full story

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Czech Republic stops accepting Vietnamese citizens' work visa requests for security reasons

21.7.2018 7:57 On 18 July the Czech Republic ceased accepting applications from citizens of Vietnam for long-term residency for the purpose of employment and applications for long-term visas for the purpose of running a business. The Czech Foreign Ministry issued a press release about the decision on 20 July.  full story

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Czech Museum of Romani Culture still waiting for funds for demolition of pig farm on genocide site

20.7.2018 17:13 Despite the fact that the last pigs were removed from the industrial farm at Lety u Písku in mid-March, the facility is in the same state as it was when the Museum of Romani Culture first took it over. While the previous owners, the AGPI firm, have already been paid, the Museum is now incurring a deficit through its current administration of the entire facility because the Government has not yet approved the transfer of the promised financing from the budget reserves for the reclamation of the site of the former concentration camp.  full story

Czech Govt Human Rights Commissioner says she will criticize politicians who are racist and resign rather than be censored

20.7.2018 14:39 Speaking in an interview for ROMEA TV, the newly-appointed Czech Government Commissioner for Human Rights, Martina Štěpánková, who answers directly to Czech
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, the head of the ANO movement, said that "Politicians create the climate in society to a significant degree. For that reason it is very important for many more politicians here to condemn racism and discrimination."  full story

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Czech NGO teaches Romani people how to start their own businesses

20.7.2018 11:53 The DROM Romani Center in Brno, Czech Republic, in collaboration with a statewide project called "Do It!", has just finished delivering a course to show Romani people how to start their own businesses. According to experts, support for small entrepreneurial activities is one way to address the problem of Romani people finding their place on the Czech labor market.  full story

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Czech Republic: Romani Student Movement says Roma must be involved in addressing affairs that affect them

20.7.2018 11:04 Earlier this month, Romani college students in Ostrava, Czech Republic officially established their group called the Romani Student Movement. In an interview for ROMEA TV, they say they are convinced that only by involving Romani people themselves in addressing affairs that affect the Romani community will effective solutions be found to various problems.  full story

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Czech Interior Minister says MP is lying about foreign nationals voting

17.7.2018 13:17 Czech MP Tomio Okamura (SPD), the vice-chair of the lower house and chair of the populist, xenophobic SPD party, announced on his official Facebook profile on Sunday that "Foreigners without Czech citizenship will newly be able to vote in the Czech Republic and run for office!" He also accused the new Czech Interior Minister Jan Hamáček of having instituted the measures immediately upon taking office.  full story

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Italy asks Czech Republic to receive asylum-seekers, Czech PM refuses

16.7.2018 10:13 Responding to a question from the Czech News Agency (ČTK) about the current Italian request for aid with refugees arriving on Italian territory, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO) said the Czech Republic will not be accepting any migrants and that he is insisting the reception of migrants be governed by the principle of voluntary action by the EU Member States. Italian PM Giuseppe Conte has asked the EU Member States for aid with redistributing 450 such people who recently ended up lost at sea.  full story

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Residents of Czech neighborhood announce "Two Weeks of Vigilance" to protest their impending eviction

16.7.2018 7:43 On Monday 9 July the residents of the Bedřiška neighborhood in Ostrava, Czech Republic announced "Two Weeks of Vigilance" out of concern that they will lose their housing there. The event, subtitled "Colors of Bedřiška" (a reference to the annual music festival Colors of Ostrava), is meant to draw attention to the difficult situation of the locals and present life in the neighborhood, which has not met the definition of an "excluded locality" for some time, to the public.  full story

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Czech politician spreads hateful racist hoaxes online against dark-skinned footballers, Muslims and Roma

16.7.2018 6:32 The Czech daily Právo reported on 10 July that Dominik Hanko, chair of the Ústecký Regional Authority's Committee for Social Affairs, Security and Socially Excluded Localities and vice-chair of the "Freedom and Direct Democracy" (SPD) party there, recently posted to social media the allegation that "Pensions for the unemployed are calculated based on the average wage. That's not fair!"  full story

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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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Czech evictees must leave school gym this weekend for housing in socially excluded localities

14.7.2018 9:25 Of the people who had to move away from one of two residential hotels that closed as of 30 June in the Czech city of Ústí nad Labem without having anywhere else to go, three families with children and three single men remain housed in the gym of a primary school in the socially excluded Předlice neighborhood. As of yesterday, two of those families have rental housing arranged in a building near Na Nivách Street, while the third family says they believe they will manage to find housing in the Nové Březno neighborhood.  full story

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Czech Public Defender of Rights calls for social housing law, says media should stop blaming Roma

13.7.2018 20:40 At the beginning of this month the annual report on the activity of the Office of the Public Defender of Rights, Anna Šabatová, was discussed in the Czech lower house. The report included motions for Government review that Šabatová last managed to bring forward in 2014.
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Czech Agriculture Ministry wants to collaborate with Romani business group, says Czech Forests already working with one

12.7.2018 11:28 News server Lidovky.cz reported on 8 July that the Association of Romani Entrepreneurs and Guilds was alleging that "nobody" has responded to their offer to provide Romani workers to combat the bark beetle calamity. The Agriculture Ministry, however, says it welcomes the aid and that negotiations will begin soon.  full story

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