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Ombudsman investigates discrimination in employment in Hungary

3 April 1999

Parliamentary Ombudsman for Minority Rights Jenő Kaltenbach held a press conference on November 23, 1998, concerning his investigation into employment practices. According to Kaltenbach, his office is contacted regularly by Roma with complaints about discrimination by employers, often including the refusal to hire them on the basis of their ethnicity. Article 5 of the Hungarian Labour Code (Act XXII of 1992) prohibits discrimination in the work place on the basis of race or ethnic origin, among others. Despite opportunities provided by the legal system, no law suits were filed in 1997 or 1998 for discrimination in employment. The office claims that there are many unreported cases of employment discrimination, which never reach organisations offering legal defence. Cases of employment discrimination reported to state employment offices are rarely investigated.

In the Ombudsman's recommendations, he asked the Ministry of Social and Family Protection to compile an information leaflet to inform prospective employees of their rights. He also suggested that employment centres should report all cases where discrimination occurs. The Ombudsman also requested that the Ministry of Justice work out a simplified procedure for discrimination cases as well as recommending that the Ministry of Internal Affairs oblige officials to report discrimination cases. The Ombudsman further suggested stricter punishment for companies suspected of discriminatory practices, including barring them from obtaining state contracts.

(ERRC, Roma Press Center)

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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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