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Spanish court denies pension to Romani widow

12 April 2000

On February 25, 2000, the Spanish non-governmental organisation Union Romani reported that the Catalonian High Court in Barcelona had ruled that, in the absence of civil marriage or civil registration, traditional Romani marriage is not sufficient to entitle a Romani woman to widow’s pension. In Spain, religious and civil marriages take place during the church service in the case of Catholic weddings. A 1992 Law on Religious Freedoms permits Jews, Muslims and non-Catholic Christians to marry according to their own religious traditions and thereafter to record their marriage in the civil register. The 1992 law does not permit registration based on traditional Romani weddings.

In response to the Catalonian High Court decision, the Spanish Romani Women’s Federation Kamira prepared an amendment to the 1992 law aimed at the recognition of Romani wedding traditions. The proposed amendment will first be presented in the parliament of Aragon and eventually submitted to the Spanish parliament. The issue has triggered public debate on the legally accepted age of marriage, acceptability of marriage between close blood relations, and the ability of Spanish society to tolerate certain traditional Romani practices related to the proof of virginity.

(ERRC, Union Romani)

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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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