The Roma face challenges in many areas and it is therefore important with a broad and comprehensive approach to Roma inclusion. The EEA and Norway Grants promote Roma inclusion in several specific areas.
As well as engaging with public bodies and local authorities, the EEA and Norway Grants actively support the critical role of civil society in tackling inequalities and voicing concerns of the vulnerable groups, including the Roma population. The Grants are one of the prime funding schemes for civil society in Central and Southern Europe. The programmes tackle horizontal concerns and promote tolerance, multicultural understanding and Roma inclusion.
Health and education
Only 15% of young Roma adults complete upper-secondary education and only 20% of Roma are covered by health insurance, according to the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). Improving information on and access to healthcare and education is key to breaking the cycle of marginalisation and poverty. Several programmes address Roma inclusion in these fields, through support to centres for youth and children at risk, prevention of early school dropout, pre-school day care and establishing Roma health and education mediators.
Justice and home affairs
Around half of the Roma respondents in survey conducted by the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) said that they have experienced discrimination in the past 12 months because of their ethnic background. Roma also appear to face harsher treatment in the justice systems.
Programmes addressing judicial reforms, improving prison conditions, addressing organised crime and gender-based violence take into account the needs of vulnerable groups, such as Roma.
Roma are often perceived by the majority population through negative reporting. To ensure better dialogue and understanding between the minority and the majority, the Grants also support the promotion of cultural diversity. This includes initiatives to foster intercultural dialogue and understanding within our societies to increase tolerance and inclusion.