Finland is preparing a National Policy on Roma

23.4.2009 6.09
News item N5-56349

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has set up a working group to prepare a National Policy on Roma. Its objective is to reinforce the inclusion and equal treatment of the Roma minority in different spheres of life. The Policy covers a number of theme areas such as education, housing, health and social services, promotion of employment, promotion of the Romani language and culture, and elimination of discrimination and vulnerability. 

The Roma population's views on the Policy have been surveyed by arranging regional hearings during the spring of 2009. The working group's term will continue until 30 June 2009.

EU requires actions regarding the Roma population

The EU General Affairs and External Relations Council discussed the conclusions aiming to promote the inclusion of Roma on 8 December 2008. In the conclusions the member states are required to undertake actions regarding Roma in 2009 and 2010. The actions will be reported to the Commission in 2010.

Also the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe encourages the governments to draw up long-term national strategies on Roma and to allocate adequate budget resources for that. The Council of Europe also underlines the significance of Romani people's own participation in the planning and implementation of the Policy.

The EU's actions on Roma are at present mainly based on the Council Directive implementing the principle of equal treatment between people irrespective of racial or ethnic origin (2000/43/EC).

For further information contact

Sarita Friman-Korpela, Secretary General, Advisory Board on Romani Affairs, tel.  (09) 1607 4308, 050 553 5530

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