Increase participation of Roma/Traveller youth

Pavee Point’s Tica Munteanu participated in dialogue on inclusion of Roma, Sinti and Travellers at an event organized by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) this week, during their annual Human Dimension Implementation Meeting in Warsaw. (See photo above)

Experiences and good practices in supporting the participation of Roma, Sinti and Traveller youth in the OSCE (Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe) region were the main topic of discussion.

“Supporting young Roma and Sinti is a valuable investment,” said Tatjana Peri, Acting Chief of the ODIHR Contact Point for Roma, Sinti and Traveller issues. “By identifying concrete ways to increase their participation in public and political life, and by putting them into practice, we both address current challenges facing Roma, Sinti and Traveller communities and create prospects for a better and more inclusive future for our societies.”

“It is high time we shift from small-scale initiatives addressing Roma,  Sinti and Traveller youth to larger, more systematic programmes,” said Tica Munteanu,  “Participating States should step up their efforts in promoting the participation of young Roma, Sinti and Travellers.”

“This event provided us with an opportunity to review the main concerns of Roma, Sinti and Traveller youth, including those of young women, and reflect on how to address these obstacles through mainstream policy-making involving more Roma, Sinti and Traveller representatives,” said Natalia Duminica, a Roma activist from Moldova.

In the run-up to the event, ODIHR organized a preparatory training event on participation and advocacy for civil society representatives from Roma, Sinti & Traveller communities.

Some 1,600 government representatives, human rights activists and experts are gathering in Warsaw for the two-week meeting, where they will review the progress made by governments in implementing their commitments in the fields of human rights and fundamental freedoms, democratic institutions and governance, and tolerance and non-discrimination.