Ms L. R. et al. v. Slovak Republic (Dobsina)
24 April 2010
Forum: Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
The case was brought by 27 Slovak citizens of Roma ethnicity, residing in Dobsin, Slovak Republic. In 2002, the councillors of the Dobsin municipality adopted a resolution whereby they approved a plan to construct low cost housing for the Roma inhabitants of the town. However, certain inhabitants of Dobsin organised a petition against this resolution. As a consequence, the town council endorsed the petition and cancelled its earlier resolution to construct low cost housing. This act is, according to the applicants, an act of racial discrimination.
The applicants complained to the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination arguing that the State Party had violated Article 2(1)(a) by failing to ensure that all public authorities and public institutions, national and local, shall act in conformity with this obligation [to engage in no act or practice of racial discrimination] and Article 2(1)(b) by failing to nullify any laws or regulations which have the effect of creating or perpetuating racial discrimination, as well as Article 2(1)(d) and Article 4(a), on the basis that the State party failed to prohibit and bring to an end to racial discrimination by any persons, group or organisation by not effectively investigating and prosecuting the petition's authors. Furthermore, they claimed a violation of Article 5(e)(iii) in that the State party failed to safeguard the petitioners' right to adequate housing as well a violation of Article 6 highlighting the failure of the State to provide them with an effective remedy against acts of racial discrimination inflicted both by the authors of the petition and the council's second resolution.
In 2003, the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination ruled in favour of the applicants and was of the view that the facts before it disclose violations of Article 2(1)(a), Article 5(d)(iii) and Article 6 of the Convention.
Judgment: View it (MSWord doc format)!