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Initiatives of the European Commission for Roma inclusion

France, Italy, Bulgaria, Serbia, Spain, etc. Currently there are between 10 and 12 million Roma.

Population, sedentary or nomadic, present in Europe for centuries and compose of groups of people such as Sinti, Gypsies, Kale, Ashkali or the Traveller, with common cultural characteristics.
However, references to Roma in the media of Eastern and Western European countries are numerous and sometimes even footprints discrimination.
In addition, a life expectancy 10 years less than the average European is recorded among Roma, the employment rate of Roma is much lower, with a gap of about 26 percentage points from a survey of the World Bank for Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Romania and Serbia.
In addition, according to the Open Society Institute, in six EU countries (Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania and Slovakia) only 42% of Roma children were completing the primary cycle, against an average of 97.5% for the general population across the EU. It therefore becomes fundamental to place Roma inclusion at the heart of political debate at the European and Member States.
The commitment of all stakeholders such as the European institutions, civil society, communities or Roma is crucial since the actors have a shared responsibility to change the situation. It is in this context that was adopted on 5 April 2011, the EU Framework for National Roma Integration Strategies which set out policies and practical measures. Political commitment that marks the willingness of member states to change the situation.

The EU Framework

The EU framework wants to tackle the problem of deep economic and social exclusion of the Roma in Europe. The proposed measures are to be effective and are based on the primary responsibility of States. If the Lisbon Treaty guarantees the right of Roma to equal treatment with other citizens of the EU directive on racial equality prohibits discrimination of Roma in the workplace and in other areas of everyday life, the directive on the right of free movement and residence within the EU allows EU Roma citizens to travel without restriction in the 27 EU Member States, the framework of the EU promote equal access to employment, education, health and housing for all.

The four areas of intervention

– Education: ensuring that all Roma children complete at least primary school and improve access to education and quality home for child care facilities and reduce segregation.

– Employment: close the gap in employment between Roma and the rest of the population

– Health: closing the gap in health between Roma and the rest of the population and improve access to health care, especially for women and children.

– Housing: overcoming inequalities in access to housing and public service networks, such as water and electricity.

These European objectives are subsequently adapted to national territories and to be achieved by 2020 a result, each country is developing its strategy for Roma inclusion. Also, to implement these measures, Member States have a number of European funds such as the Structural Funds through the ESF, ERDF or EAFRD and the “Fundamental Rights and Citizenship” and ERASMUS +.

These strategies will result from the actions that will be evaluated annually by the European Commission. This evaluation will be based among others on the information provided by Member States, NGOs and experts, on progress on a direct dialogue between the Commission and national authorities responsible for the integration of Roma, on field visits, on the review of the use of funds as well as the results of a survey, on Roma households.

The European Commission therefore underlines the need for additional efforts for Roma inclusion. Fourteen years after the adoption of European directives relating to the fight against discrimination, the Roma still witnessing discrimination. Also, these initiatives at the local, regional and European reflect a constant search for adequate solutions to a population that is both unique and heterogeneous, to enjoy their rights in Europe.


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