Slovakia still faces unresolved issues with Roma and sexual minorities

THE EUROPEAN Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) initiative has published a Report on Slovakia that points to certain progress but also a number of unresolved issues regarding the integration of Roma communities.

THE EUROPEAN Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) initiative has published a Report on Slovakia that points to certain progress but also a number of unresolved issues regarding the integration of Roma communities.

The report praised Slovakia for adopting legislative measures to prevent discrimination due to race or ethnic origin. Moreover, it considers it positive that the ombudswoman plays an active role in the fight against discrimination and positive role models in this respect have emerged, the TASR newswire reported.

The ECRI report, however, claims that anti-minority rhetoric is still common among politicians as well as derogatory expressions directed at individuals with alternative sexual orientation.

The ECRI recommends that Slovakia complete the reform of the Slovak National Centre for Human Rights in order to ensure efficient implementation of the anti-discrimination law. The ECRI also raised criticism over the housing situation of the Roma community and segregation of children in the school system. It also wants Slovakia to create a mechanism for collecting individual data on expressions of hate and xenophobia and make these incidents available to the public, TASR reported.

The report was drafted following a visit to Slovakia in November 2013 and records developments in this sphere up to March 2014.

The ECRI represents a body of the Council of Europe that deals with human rights and consists of a panel of independent experts who monitor the issues of racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, intolerance and discrimination.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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