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Roma in France Face Multiple Evictions

8 March 2013

Budapest, 8 March 2013: Roma from Aubervilliers have faced multiple evictions, with disproportionate use of police force, after their settlement was burned down last month. The European Roma Rights Centre and Médecins du Monde sent a letter to French authorities asking them to provide assistance for the families.

Around 300 Roma were living in Aubervilliers until their settlement was destroyed by fire on 22 February. Around 50 members of the community, including 15 children, took up emergency accommodation in a school, organised by the prefecture and Red Cross. This temporary accommodation was available for just four nights, and Romani people were forced to go back onto the street, despite the extreme winter weather conditions.

On Tuesday 26 February, some of the Romani individuals started to build new shacks on vacant land in Saint Denis. On 28 February local police started to evict the families, even though they had been present on the land for more than 48 hours, and despite intervention from the families’ lawyer to the police chief of Saint Denis. In France an eviction of a squat or settlement should only take place with a court order once inhabitants have been there for more than 48 hours, and Médecins du Monde provided testimony that this was the case.

According to eye witnesses, police used disproportionate force against Romani individuals during the evictions: one police officer dragged a Romani woman along the floor while she was holding on to her tent, and pushed children away.

The same 50 people settled in Noisy Le Sec approximately 10 km away from Saint Denis, on 1 March but were evicted again on 3 March.

French authorities should make a social assessment before any eviction, according to a bylaw passed last year. This would allow authorities to identify adequate and sustainable solutions and prevent multiple evictions of precarious communities. To date, forced evictions of Roma in France have continued, and authorities are still not finding sustainable housing solutions for all.

This letter is also available in French.

For more information, contact:

Sinan Gökçen
Media and Communications Officer
European Roma Rights Centre

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School Segregation of Roma and Egyptian Communities in Albania

24 November 2015

This video talks about segregation of Roma and Egyptian children in one school in Albania. The "Naim Frasheri" school, covering nine grades, is in outskirts of city of Korca. It is known as "Roma and Egyptian" school because all children of this school come from families from these two communities. The school has a total of 283 Roma and Egyptian children. The video shows as well what important role can play institutions such as Commissioner for Protection from Discrimination and People' Advocate (Ombudsman) in fighting school segregation. The decision of Commissioner for Protection from Discrimination and Recommendations of People' Advocate create an working platform not only for Ministry of Education and its depending institutions, but as well for all actors working in this field.

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ERRC submission to UN UPR on Hungary (September 2015)

22 September 2015

Written Comments of the European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC), Chance for Children Foundation (CFCF) and Legal Defence Bureau for National and Ethnic Minorities (NEKI), concerning Hungary for consideration by the Human Rights Council (HRC) within its Universal Periodic Review at its 25th session, April / May 2016. 

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Joint submission to UN CEDAW on Slovakia (October 2015)

2 October 2015

Written comments by the European Roma Rights Centre and Center for Civil and Human Rights concerning Slovakia to the UN Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women at the 62nd Session (26 October - 20 November 2015).  

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