Roma: Demanding equality and human rights

With a population of 10 to 12 million, the Roma are one of the largest and most disadvantaged minorities in Europe. Six million live in the EU.

Hundreds of thousands of Roma have been forced to live in informal settlements and camps, often without heating, water or sanitation; tens of thousands are forcibly evicted from their homes every year.

Thousands of Romani children are placed in segregated schools and receive a substandard education.

Roma are often denied access to jobs and quality health care. They are victims of racially motivated violence and are often left unprotected by the police and without access to justice.

This is not a coincidence. It is the result of widespread discrimination and racism that Roma face throughout Europe.

Governments across the region are failing to protect their rights.

Pushing governments and the EU to take decisive action

When it comes to the treatment of the Roma, EU governments are not just failing to respect binding international human rights standards, but also to enforce EU anti-discrimination law.

Amnesty International has been campaigning with Roma activists and organizations, to put pressure on the European Commission – the executive body of the European Union – to step in, where governments are failing, and put an end to the discrimination Roma face. Follow our work and stand up for equality and Roma rights!


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News and Updates

Italy: Many children among dozens left homeless by forced eviction in Rome

9 July 2014

The forced eviction of 39 people – 11 of them young children, including several babies – from a Roma settlement in a Rome suburb this morning is a blatant violation of international human rights law and standards that has left numerous families homeless, Amnesty International said.


France: Forced evictions add to climate of fear amid alleged hate crimes

17 June 2014

The apparent lynching of a Roma teenager in a Paris suburb that left him in a coma is just one of several recent alleged hate crimes against minorities that demand thorough investigations and not just condemnation by the French authorities, Amnesty International warned.

Czech Republic: “Maybe this is what it was like during Hitler’s era”

8 April 2014

When Romani children in the city of České Budějovice, in southern Czech Republic, wake up scared in the middle of the night, it is not for fear of imaginary monsters.

France: “They said they would have killed us if we stayed”

8 April 2014

Attacks, discrimination, violent evictions, homelessness and extreme poverty. Life for the 20,000 Roma in France – most of them migrants – is a far cry from the idyllic image the country tries to portray.

Roma in Europe: Demanding justice and protection in the face of violence

8 April 2014

European states are failing to curb and in some cases even fuelling discrimination, intimidation and violence against Roma, Amnesty International said on International Roma Day on 8 April.


Poland: Further information: Threats of forced eviction to Roma continue

17 May 2013

On 7 May 2013, around 20 Roma residents of an informal settlement on Paprotna Street, Wroclaw were served with a 14-day eviction notice by the municipality without any consultation with them on the planned eviction. The 20 Roma residents including children have been living in Paprotna Street for the past three years following a previous eviction.

Czech Republic’s discriminatory treatment of Roma breaches EU Race Directive

29 April 2013

Amnesty International, the European Roma Rights Centre and the Open Society Justice Initiative submit this briefing for consideration by the European Commission. The briefing focuses on the continuing discrimination against Romani children in the Czech Republic’s education system which violates the country’s obligations under the Directive. It provides evidence of disproportionate placement of Romani pupils in a system of inferior education and their segregation in Roma-only schools.

France: Further Information: Eviction forces up to 200 from their homes

19 April 2013

Up to 200 people have been forcibly evicted from an informal settlement in Ris-Orangis, on the outskirts of Paris, France. Eight families have begun legal proceedings.

Europe: End forced evictions of Roma in Europe

15 April 2013

European governments forcibly evict thousands of people from their homes, ignoring their obligations under international law. Most of those forcibly evicted are people who live in poverty or on the margins of society. This leaflet explains the right to adequate housing which includes the right not to be forcibly evicted – rights that belong to all human beings, everywhere.

Europe: Human rights here, Roma rights now: A wake-up call to the European Union

4 April 2013

Thirteen years after the introduction of the Race Equality Directive, discrimination against Roma in Europe remains widespread. EU member states must respect international and EU antidiscrimination legislation. The European Commission is the guardian of EU law; it must act now to ensure respect for the Race Equality Directive.

Europe: Facts of shame: Discrimination, forced evictions, segregation and violence against Roma in the European Union

4 April 2013

Between 10 and 12 million Roma live in Europe; approximately half of them in EU member states. Eight out of 10 Roma households in the EU are at risk of poverty.

Poland: Roma families face forced eviction in Poland

4 April 2013

Over 60 Roma people living in an informal settlement in Wroclaw, western Poland, face imminent forced eviction after notices were delivered by the municipality on 26 March.

France: Over 200 people face forced eviction

2 April 2013

Over 200 people living in an informal settlement in Ris-Orangis on the outskirts of Paris face imminent forced eviction following a decision taken by the municipality on 29 March 2013.

Italy: Municipality of Rome denies social housing to Roma living in formal camps

27 February 2013

Romani families living in formal camps in Rome will not be able to gain access to social housing, according to new guidance from the local authorities. Scores of families had already filed their applications and many more were about to do so, when news of the discriminatory new guidance emerged.

Romania: Roma housing in spotlight as NGOs meet new government in Romania

15 February 2013

The Minister of Regional Development in Romania acknowledged that the situation of Roma living on and near a rubbish dump in Pata Rât is ‘unacceptable’, during a meeting with non-governmental organisations (NGO) earlier this week.