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  Nr. 4267 de miercuri, 25 iunie 2008 
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EU: Romania makes progress with countering discrimination
According to the yearly report by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights, Romania, Britain, Ireland, France, Italy, Belgium and Bulgaria have been making progress with the fight against discrimination. There is mentioned that these states have proceeded to fines for ethnic and racial discrimination, according to www.ziare.com.
The report underlines that the number of sanctions is a proof of the anti-discrimination system's efficiency. The above-mentioned countries are described as housing more sanctions against discrimination than the remaining member states.
Romania has been appreciated by the EU due to the Romanian Soccer Federation's decision to sanction any player, official or spectator who discriminates any other person in public, in terms such as race, colour, language, religion or origin.
On the other hand, Bucharest authorities are criticized for not having provided statistic data about authorities' abuses of persons' rights in 2006.
There is also the fact that the EU agency authoring the report mentions that some member states encourage the collecting of data on ethnic origin, whereas other countries are reticent to such a process. Therefore Romania, the Czech Republic and Finland are reproached for not collecting enough information about the situation of the ethnic minorities they house. Moreover, Romania, Finland, Hungary, Denmark, France and the Netherlands are criticized for a practice such as discrimination at the office. There is quoted a survey claiming that, if running their own business, 60% of Romanians wouldn't hire Roma people.
Nevertheless, Romania is praised for the Interior Ministry's initiative to create special jobs for the Roma ethnics and also for the members of other minorities. "The Roma ethnics in Romania and Bulgaria may get excluded from the public system of health insurance if they have been unemployed a long time or if they have got no identity documents (in Romania and Slovenia", the report argues.
There is also mentioned that the Roma make a most vulnerable category as far as their lodging places are concerned, since there are lots of such ethnics who live in places not meeting the lowest standards acceptable. Bulgaria, Romania, the Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Spain, France, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia and Slovakia have housed cases of discrimination and mandatory evacuation. But there is highlighted that the extension of the exclusion of the Roma varies from state to state, still it seems to be a problem in the entire Europe. (Z.O.)
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