Reader feedback: A complicated issue

Re: Roma leaders warn of another exodus, News shorts, Nov 18-23, Vol 9 No 44,

The assimilation of Roma can be achieved. I have lived in Slovakia for 30 years and grew up with many Roma friends. Roma from cities, towns, and larger villages in western Slovakia are usually much more assimilated than those from eastern Slovakia. When I was about 7-8 years old (1965), there was a Roma settlement on the outskirts of my town in western Slovakia. Roma built their dwellings, without any permit, on land they didn't own - mostly without proper sanitation. A few years later, authorities gave these Roma homes in town, basically separating them. It was probably drastic for them, but they assimilated quite well.

So I remember these settled Roma, but also those that were still travelling with their wagons drawn by horses. Even settled Roma kept away from the travelling ones. I don't know what happened to the travelling ones after communism ended their way of life. Perhaps they built those shanty settlements in rural Slovakia and kept their way of life, speaking only their own Roma dialect. Where I am from, every Roma speaks Slovak and their own dialect. I personally think the Roma situation in all of central Europe, and to a lesser degree in western Europe, is much more complicated than any of us can imagine.

Pete, Slovakia

Top stories

News digest: Fear and anger are prevaling emotions in Slovakia, president said

Kočner and Zsuzsová charged with planning murders. PCR tests are free for symptomatic people.


7 h
President Zuzana Caputova delivers her state of the republic address in parliament on September 27, 2021.

President Čaputová: We need to protect this world and Slovakia's place in it

In her speech about the state of the republic, the president offered a grim summary of the pandemic so far. Slovakia is in desperate need of stability.


13 h
Ahmedur Rashid Chowdhury (aka Tutul)

Bratislava reminds me of Bangladesh, says exiled writer

Ahmedur Rashid Chowdhury calls on the Slovak capital to help exiled writers and artists work through their trauma.


18 h
Most Slovak believe that “we” should also include foreigners, although they are quick to point out that efforts to integrate should be undertaken mainly by the foreigners themselves.

What Slovaks shouldn’t forget when they dream of the perfect foreigner

Bratislava’s mayor is right that integration is a two-way street, but even the capital still has some way to go to see foreigners as residents rather than just visitors.


27. sep
Skryť Close ad