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Portugal’s Housing Policy for Roma Violates Social Charter

7 November 2011

Budapest, Strasbourg, 7 November 2011:  The European Committee of Social Rights today delivered a decision, finding Portugal in violation of the Revised European Social Charter. This followed a collective complaint brought by the European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC) concerning the housing situation of Roma in Portugal.

The Committee of Social Rights is the monitoring body established under the European Social Charter. The decision sends a clear message to the Portuguese government that they must act to end this situation.
 
The widespread housing-related injustices occurring in Portugal include problems of access to social housing, substandard quality of housing, lack of access to basic utilities, residential segregation of Romani communities and other systemic violations of the right to housing; these are compounded by a lack of practical access to effective legal remedies for redress.
 
The committee said that the “continuing precarious housing conditions for a large part of the Roma community, coupled with the fact that the Government has not demonstrated that it has taken sufficient measures to ensure that Roma live in housing conditions that meet minimum standards” was in breach of Portugal’s obligations under the social charter.

Dezideriu Gergely, Executive Director of the ERRC, said,“ We welcome the committee's recognition that Portuguese authorities have discriminated against Roma in failing to improve segregated, substandard housing conditions for these communities. We urge Portuguese authorities to rethink housing policies which worsen living conditions and to invest in sustainable, lasting solutions.”

For more information contact:
Sinan Gökçen
ERRC Media and Communications Officer
sinan.gokcen@errc.org
+36.30.500.1324

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Policy Officer (focus on Hungary)

26 January 2015

Analysing policies concerning Roma access to education, housing and social services in EU member states and candidate countries, with special attention to segregating and discriminatory outcomes of policy measures. 

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ERRC calls on Macedonian Authorities to Stop Blocking its Citizens from Leaving the Country

23 September 2014

Budapest, Skopje, 24 September 2014: The European Roma Rights Centre (ERRC) sent an open letter today to national and international authorities to express its concern about the continuing efforts of the Macedonian government to prevent its citizens, including those of Roma origin, from leaving the country if they have been deported from other countries or are suspected of planning to claim asylum in the EU.

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Roma Rights 1 2014: Going Nowhere? Western Balkan Roma and EU Visa Liberalisation

1 October 2014

This issue of Roma Rights draws attention to Roma from the Western Balkans and EU visa liberalisation. Migration of Roma from the Western Balkans has attracted significant attention, which at times amounts to hysteria. It has had an impact on migration policy both in countries of origin and target countries for migration. Romani migration has also become a common topic in public discourse, often framed in negatively by media and by public figures. The articles in this issue assess the motivations for Romani migration, the impact of migration policies on Roma, and the experience of Romani migrants. 

Roma Rights 1 2014: Going Nowhere? (PDF)

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