“Roma Pride”: Mobilization against racism and discrimination

05.10.2012 - 13:46

The European Grassroots Antiraciste Movement (EGAM) launches on October 7 the second “Roma Pride” all over Europe, aiming to fight racism towards Roma people, protect their equal rights, stop their marginalization and celebrate their identity.

The event will take place in 14 countries: France, Denmark, Norway, Italy, Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Poland, Ukraine, UK, Turkey, Czech Republic and Bulgaria, enjoying the support of various Human Rights Organizations, student and trade unions, artists, politicians etc.

Earlier this year, antiracist and Roma leaders of 27 countries has signed a manifesto called "For the dignity of Roma people in Europe : Roma Pride !",which was published in numerous European newspapers. This manifesto raises the issue of discriminatory treatment and prejudice that the Roma people have been facing for a long time now. Specific examples are mentioned, as the confinement of the Roma in the outskirts of the cities in Central Europe and the Balkans, where they have no water or electricity, or their terrorization by militia in Hungary. Also, they clearly state complaints over the infringement of their fundamental rights in health, employment, leisure and education that occurs in many EU countries.

As a consequence, the “Roma Pride” mobilization is a way to show their dignity and demand integration to society and equal treatment with other EU citizens.

Between 10 million and 12 million Roma are estimated to live in the EU, in candidate countries and potential candidate countries in the Western Balkans. The vast majority of them lives in extreme marginalization and under very poor social-economic conditions experiencing discrimination, violence, unemployment, poverty, bad housing and poor health standards.