The EPSCO Council at its 3507th meeting held on 8 December 2016 adopted the Council Conclusions “Accelerating the Process of Roma Integration” which highlight the need to fight antigypsyism, as well as call for recognition and remembrance of the Roma Genocide.
Extracts of the Council Conclusions:
- Equality is one of the founding values of the European Union and combating social exclusion and discrimination is one of its specific tasks.
THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION
10. WELCOMES the 2016 Commission Communication assessing the implementation of the EU Framework and the Council Recommendation on effective Roma integration measures in the Member States, NOTING WITH REGRET the fact, clearly highlighted in the Communication, that despite the measures taken by the Member States, only limited progress has been made in advancing Roma integration, in particular at the local level. Reasons for this include insufficient cooperation between stakeholders, a lack of commitment by local authorities, and the ineffective use of available funds and continued discrimination against Roma.
URGES THE MEMBER STATES TO
25. Increase the efforts to eliminate all forms of segregation in education […].
27. Prevent further unjustified forced evictions of Roma by ensuring that forced evictions always take place in full compliance with Union and national law and in accordance with international human rights instruments, in particular the European Convention on Human Rights. Ensure that the persons concerned are provided with reasonable notice and adequate information and that adequate alternative housing is offered to evicted families, in accordance with national legislation.
28. Acknowledge the discrimination and racism affecting Roma, and with this in mind, take measures at national and local levels to implement and enforce legal safeguards against discrimination, racism, xenophobia, hate crime and hate speech, in line with the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and in particular with its Article 21 and the Council Framework Decision 2008/913/JHA of 28 November 2008 on combating certain forms and expressions of racism and xenophobia by means of criminal law. Fight all forms of racism against Roma, sometimes referred to as anti-Gypsyism, as it is a root cause of their social exclusion and discrimination.
29. Tackle prejudices against Roma through awareness raising and sensitising measures aimed at the mainstream population, for example by promoting a positive image of Roma, or promoting Roma culture, language or history, through school curricula, media, academic programmes or research.
30. Step up their efforts to ensure the effective practical enforcement of the Racial Equality Directive 2000/43/EC, including by ensuring that their national, regional and local administrative regulations are not discriminatory and do not result in segregation practices.
31. Taking note of the European Parliament Resolution 2015/2615, recognise and commemorate the victims of the Roma genocide that took place during World War II, in accordance with their national practices.