Title

Romani Human Rights: Old Problems, New Possibilities

Tuesday, April 09, 2002
2200 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
United States
Members: 
Name: 
Hon. Christopher Smith
Title Text: 
Co-Chairman
Body: 
Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe
Name: 
Hon. Joseph Pitts
Title Text: 
Commissioner
Body: 
Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe
Witnesses: 
Name: 
Nicolae Gheorghe
Title: 
Section Head, Contact Point on Roma and Sinti Issues
Body: 
OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)
Name: 
Dimitrina Petrova
Title: 
Executive Director
Body: 
European Roma Rights Center
Name: 
Rumyan Russinov
Title: 
Director
Body: 
Roma Participation Project
Name: 
Her Excellency Elena Poptodorova
Title: 
Ambassador to the United States
Body: 
Republic of Bulgaria

This hearing discussed the mistreatment of the Romani, in particular the discrimination they face in Central and Eastern Europe. Witnesses commented on the exclusion of Romani from public facilities in several countries, which the governments justify as legal and legitimate public order measures. Witnesses also brought up articles in several European newspapers that explicitly described Roma children as less intelligent and more suited for “special” schools with limited academic resources. The hearing also discussed the use of a successful anti-discrimination program in Viden, Bulgaria as a model for other communities.

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