Tag: czech republic
A new report by the ERRC gives voice to Romani women who describe the shocking and chillingly routine abuses they endured as victims of coercive sterilization; the physical, social and psychological impacts on their lives; and their role as courageous activists in the fight for justice and reproductive rights.
By Marek Balaz
On this day, back in 2007 the ERRC’s long struggle against school segregation was vindicated in an historic judgment by the European Court of Human Rights. When the ERRC first brought D.H. and others vs. the Czech Republic before the court, Roma children in the Czech Republic were 27 times more likely than non-Roma children to be placed in "special schools" for the mentally disabled. In 2007, the European Court of Human Rights ruled this pattern of segregation to be unlawful and discriminatory. Although the case was labeled Europe’s own Brown vs. the Board of Education, nine years after the judgment, the struggle to end school segregation of Romani children continues.
Opre ERTF! European Roma and Travellers Forum prevails against the Czech Republic on Roma health and housing
With infringement proceedings ongoing in the Czech Republic for segregation of Romani children in education, ERTF’s victory before the ECSR puts the spotlight on the persistence and prevalence of anti-Roma discrimination in housing and health care.
When words fall on stony soil and hearts harden in the face of injustice: On coercive sterilisation and social theatre
In Czechoslovakia coercive sterilisation policies primarily targeted groups that were considered a threat to the public health of society. Romani women were among these targeted groups, and over a period of almost thirty years, hundreds of Romani women were either sterilised without their knowledge, or unduly pressured by doctors and social workers to ‘consent’ to sterilisation. It was a bitter and cruel historical twist that Czechoslovakia launched its eugenic program focused on limiting the reproductive capacities of its ‘problematic’ groups in the early 1970s, just when Sweden finally chose to abolish its coercive sterilisation policies. Sweden had the unsavoury distinction of being the first country to introduce eugenic laws in the 1930s, even before Nazi Germany or fascist Italy. Only in 1993 did Czech-Slovak authorities abolish such abusive state policies, but in the absence of any new comprehensive policy framework, the practice mushroomed and continued until early 2000.
In the last couple of years we have increasingly focused our work in the Balkans. We are aware of millions of Roma in the region who can use our help in their fight against discrimination, and the EU accession process provides an opportunity to make a lasting change.