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Recipients of social benefits should not be immune from minor offences, Roma reform says

The state should respond to the continuous criminal activities of people who receive social benefits, according to the authors of the Roma reform titled “The Right Way”, who have presented its second part, dedicated to law enforcement, the SITA newswire reported on November 16.

The state should respond to the continuous criminal activities of people who receive social benefits, according to the authors of the Roma reform titled “The Right Way”, who have presented its second part, dedicated to law enforcement, the SITA newswire reported on November 16.

“For those who continuously violate the laws we will have to prepare measures which will change the form or amount of individual benefits that they receive from the state,” said Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák, as quoted by SITA.

One of the statements, on which the reform is based, is that as a result of the current legal state, crimes committed by socially-dependent people go unpunished when they do not have enough money to pay the fines. Such a situation might be partly resolved by limiting the benefits received for “material needs”.

“We are prepared to make such legislative changes,” said government proxy for Roma communities, Peter Pollák, as quoted by SITA, adding that all people have to have the same duties.

The authors of the Roma reform also propose employing people who owe money to their local municipalities for certain jobs as a way of enabling them to pay off their debt, saying that only people who are “responsible” should be allowed to earn money for their work.

The third problem identified by the authors of the reform involves the education, social and legal system, which does not protect teachers from aggressive behaviour of pupils or their parents. This, according to the reform, discourages teachers from teaching children from “problematic” environments. Therefore the reform proposes to modify the form and amount of social benefits received by families based on the behaviour of their children at school.

The reform contains an additional four parts, which focus on housing, employment and other policies designed to aid the Roma as well as their funding, SITA wrote.

Source: SITA

For more information about this story please see: Official 'Roma Reform' is launched

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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