Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Slovakia celebrates International Roma Day

The word ‘Gypsy’, often used in a derogatory or disrespectful way, was officially discarded in favour of ‘Roma’ 45 years ago.

World Roma Festival 2014(Source: Courtesy of BKIS)

Slovakia should be promoting the cultural identity of Roma from their childhood, according to In Minorita and Romano Kher, the NGOs working with Roma.

NGOs organised a press conference on April 7 to raise awareness of International Roma Day celebrated on April 8. They spoke about their work with Roma pupils, women and the media. They also highlighted current challenges the new government is facing in this issue.

“Politicians have again started to use the pejorative term “gypsy”" Zuzana Kumanová of In Minorita NGO said at the press conference, adding that this violates the fundamental principles of what International Roma Day means.

Read also: Read also:Former Roma proxy leaves mixed record

The day was officially launched in 1990 in honour of the first major international meeting of Roma representatives, which took place from 7-12 April 1971 in Chelsfield, near London. During this event the word ‘Gypsy’, often used in a derogatory or disrespectful way, was officially discarded in favour of ‘Roma’.

Several events are scheduled on April 8 concerning the Roma issue. For example, a friendly soccer match between young Roma, Roma mayors, foreign diplomats and Slovak politicians will be held at the Železná Studienka recreation area. This event is supported by the US Embassy in Bratislava.

“Are the Romani people in your country treated with the same respect and tolerance given to others? April 8, International Romani Day, is a good day to reflect on that question,” reads the Embassy’s press release.

Read also: Read also:New government ignores Roma and refugees

President Andrej Kiska will visit Roma ghetto Luník IX in Košice and also local kindergarten.

There will also be a Roma Fashion Show at 17:30 in Košice's  Kasárne Kulturpark cultural centre. 

In Minorita will launch the first in a series of lectures about Roma at the Cultural Centre Dunaj in Bratislava on that day and public broadcaster RTVS will broadcast a documentary about successful Roma graduates. 

Top stories

Employee of the ministry’s agency accused of corruption

If found guilty, the employee of the Agricultural Paying Agency may spend up to eight years in prison for taking a bribe.

Sagan wins first race of 2017 Video

The Slovak cyclist triumphed at the second race of the Belgian classics.

Peter Sagan

Queues rigged at foreigners’ police, say clients

Not our problem, say police, who blame ‘cultural specifics’ and ‘habits’ of foreigners.

Queue in front of the foreigners' police department in Bratislava.

Legendary Luna bar to reopen Photo

The programme in the bar will focus on retro and oldies.

Luna Bar in the Kyjev Hotel