04 September 2012
Europe: The European Network Against Racism (ENAR) has, in a letter to the European Commission’s Vice-President and Commissioner responsible for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship, Viviane Reding (pictured), said efforts to ease restrictions on eastern Europeans in France will be ‘pointless’ unless further action is taken.
While ENAR hailed the decision to place the issue of employment restrictions for Romanian and Bulgarian citizens in France on the EU Council’s agenda as “a first step towards encouraging the inclusion of Roma in Europe,” – in addition to welcoming France’s decision to lift these restrictions – it has also warned that “these positive steps will be pointless unless additional action is taken.”
The letter said: “Opening up jobs for Roma from Romania and Bulgaria will not help if employers do not hire them as a result of widespread prejudice.”
It added: “Forced evictions of Roma communities must stop. As part of its obligations under international human rights law, France needs to ensure that nobody is forced into homelessness or made vulnerable to human rights violations as a result of evictions.”