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Action on Segregation of Roma in Greek Schools

13 February 2006

International NGOs Send Letter of Concern to Greek Education Minister

Budapest, Vienna.
On Friday, February 10, the European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC) and the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights (IHF) sent a letter to Greek Minister of Education Marietta Yannakou, expressing concern about the placement of Romani pupils in segregated classes in Aspropyrgos on the outskirts of Athens, following an initial refusal of enrolment and highly inadequate responses by Greek authorities.

The letter notes a range of actions undertaken by various agencies – and in particular by IHF member Greek Helsinki Monitor – aiming to try to secure enrolment in equal quality, integrated classes for Romani children in the Psari settlement in Aspropyrgos. The letter observes that authorities have been aware of the exclusion of Roma from schooling and/or efforts at their segregation into separate, substandard schooling arrangements, since at least 2002. Efforts at securing integrated education for these children have not yet met with success, and indeed have provoked a backlash by local non-Romani parents. The letter notes that these issues are not confined solely to schools in Aspropyrgos, and cites examples of school segregation of Roma in other parts of Greece.

The letter urges Minister Yannakou to take all measures available to her office to remedy, without delay, the situation in the primary schools at issue in Aspropyrgos, and indeed throughout the country.

The joint ERRC/IHF letter is copied to, among others, the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as to the Permanent Representative of the Permanent Mission of Greece to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

The full text of the letter is available HERE.

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ERRC submission to UN HRC on Hungary (February 2018)

14 February 2018

Written Comments of the European Roma Rights Centre concerning Hungary to the UN Human Rights Committee for consideration at its 122nd session (12 Narch - 6 April 2018).

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The Fragility of Professional Competence: A Preliminary Account of Child Protection Practice with Romani and Traveller Children in England

24 January 2018

Romani and Traveller children in England are much more likely to be taken into state care than the majority population, and the numbers are rising. Between 2009 and 2016 the number of Irish Travellers in care has risen by 400% and the number of Romani children has risen 933%. The increases are not consistent with national trends, and when compared to population data, suggest that Romani and Traveller children living in the UK could be 3 times more likely be taken into public care than any other child. 

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Families Divided: Romani and Egyptian Children in Albanian Institutions

21 November 2017

There’s a high percentage of Romani and Egyptian children in children’s homes in Albania – a disproportionate number. These children are often put into institutions because of poverty, and then find it impossible ever to return to their families. Because of centuries of discrimination Roma and Egyptians in Albania are less likely to live in adequate housing, less likely to be employed and more likely to feel the effects of extreme poverty.

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