Protecting the Rights of Romani Children in the Child Protection System in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Slovakia

Protecting the Rights of Romani Children in the Child Protection System in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Slovakia

This project, implemented by the ERRC in partnership with the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee, the Milan Simecka Foundation and osservAzione, aims to identify rights violations and other problems associated with Romani children in State care in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Slovakia. It aims to assess whether or not Romani children are disproportionately represented in State institutional care and their chances for family reunification or alternative family placement. Discrimination, exclusion and inadequate access to housing, education, health care, and employment place Romani families at a particular risk of family break-up and means that they are poorly equipped to navigate the child protection system. Through research and advocacy, the project will address these problems and promote legal and policy reform to prevent family break-up and provide appropriate services to Romani children and their families. Funded by the EU's Fundamental Rights and Citizenship programme, this project runs from January 2010 through June 2011.

The project activities include:

  1. Training for researchers.
  2. Legislation/policy analysis.
  3. Creation of country-specific pamphlets outlining the rights of children and families in the child protection system, including contacts of local resources and assistance organisations.
  4. Quantitative data collection to identify the proportion and, if possible, the overall number of Romani children in State care.
  5. Qualitative research targeting child protection professionals/authorities, institution officials, children living in state care (if possible), and families that have experienced break-up or at risk of break-up.
  6. Preparation of individual country reports, in English and in the language of the country.
  7. Preparation of a comparative report.
  8. Four country roundtables to review the findings and commence a dialogue on opportunities for reform.
  9. EU conference to disseminate findings to a European and international audience.
  10. Ongoing advocacy on legal/policy changes and implementation.

For more information, contact Ostalinda Maya Ovalle: ostalinda.maya@errc.org 

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