• Sweden edition
 

'Roma need better legal protection in Sweden'

Published: 27 Apr 2011 08:06 GMT+02:00
Updated: 27 Apr 2011 08:06 GMT+02:00

"Local actors, such as state agencies and municipalities, need to take responsibility for seeing that Roma aren't subject to discrimination," ombudsman investigator Heidi Pikkarainen told the Svenska Dadbladet (SvD) newspaper.

As one of Sweden's five national minorities, the Roma are supposed to be guaranteed the right to deal with local authorities in their own language.

Between 2004 and 2010, the ombudsman received 230 complaints alleging discrimination against Sweden's Roma.

But prior to 2009, Swedish anti-discrimination laws didn't encompass the way public sector employees treated members of the public, making it was impossible for the ombudsman to investigate allegations that Roma had been discriminated against in their dealings with the Swedish legal system.

According to the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brottsförebyggande rådet – Brå), Sweden's Roma faced the most difficulty in their dealings with the country's legal system in 2008 because of prevailing views that Roma are criminals, SvD reports.

Despite the new legislation, the ombudsman continues to find it difficult to prove the Roma are discriminated against by public bodies.

Ombudsman investigator Pikkarainen believes that laws preventing discrimination in the legal system need to be reviewed and updated.

"It's extremely serious if someone is subject to discrimination in a legal proceeding because it's such a central part everyone's equal rights," she told the newspaper.

In addition to strengthening laws, Pikkarainen believes that more Roma discrimination cases need to be heard by the Swedish courts.

TT/The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

08:36 April 27, 2011 by JulieLou40
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
09:45 April 27, 2011 by helveeta
Does anyone know a Roma person who isn't sketchy/criminal? I am serious because I don't know much about these people I just hear terrible things that they steal and make their children into criminals, etc. Maybe people need to be enlightened on their situation. Maybe these people need rehabilitation on how to be good citizens if they never were taught these skills in their homeland.

That's the thing that Sweden is missing out on. Some of the people coming here as immigrants have NO social skills or manners and now well-behaved Swedes are subjected to them. This is why racism is brewing.
10:02 April 27, 2011 by truthworthy
@helveeta

Arrogant people like you need to be silent, you say you dont know about the people yet you make racist comments about them based on hearsay. Your bigotry can be understood from the way you talk about immigrants.

Please save face and shut up! otherwise make a sense.
10:03 April 27, 2011 by ruimove
"As one of Sweden's five national minorities, the Roma are supposed to be guaranteed the right to deal with local authorities in their own language."

Why? I see Yddish, Sami and the several Finish dialects are included, so I assume they also need translators , or is just the "darling" minorities of the lefties?

And since we are all Swedish nationals maybe we need to speak the main language in the country? maybe that will help!
10:12 April 27, 2011 by helveeta
@truthworthy, I did not make racist comments. I merely repeated said hearsay. Don't stereotype me, dude. I see you on this site always trying to make trouble. I am trying to make a valid point. I went to SFI I live in Sweden and see how things are progressing. There are some major culture clashes going on here and it's not going to be pretty if things are worked out NOW. I have children and I want a good society for them.
10:43 April 27, 2011 by occassional
The fundamental question is: Why do some people have it and others don't ?
11:00 April 27, 2011 by johnny1939
Why do the Romas have to deal w/ the criminal justice system anyway? We all know how honest and upstanding these people are. Surely the Romas that live in Sweden for centuries speak and read Swedish if the need would be for them to communicate w/ the criminal and social systems. I am quite old and I have never had to deal w/ any of these systems so what gives?
13:14 April 27, 2011 by laviniutza
I have a question for all you guys: Is just the romas who murder, rape, rob and etc ? Or, there are others besides roma pll? Did Sweden or any other European country , had prisons before roma got here? Did? If so, why? Cos just roma pll are the bad ones, the dirty one , the ones u should avoid, this is what society is telling you today . So, yes, Sweden as all other European countries HAD prisons, because there were citezens who behaved exactly as roma, but they werent roma.
14:08 April 27, 2011 by occassional
@laviniutza

So, why add to the problem?
14:31 April 27, 2011 by laviniutza
@occassional

Is just the fact I'm a bit tired of this general rroma bashing. I dont say they are not as most of us know, but they are not the only one acting like that.
14:49 April 27, 2011 by Syftfel
Better legal protections???? How about if these people started by obeying the laws, customs, and behavior of their host countries? Until that happens the only laws that should be strengthened are those that concern border controls and deportations. The story talks about "prevailing views" assuming that they are all criminals. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this is indeed the case. True statistics are hard to come by, since our authorities do not consider it PC to publish them. Lay the cards on the table and let us decide! Brå, as is often case, is barking up the wrong tree.
15:02 April 27, 2011 by andy_so
like johnny1939 said, there are romas that have been living in sweden for centuries, so i dont think this artical is refering to them.

ive spent a lot of time in eastern europe (romania, hungary, slovakia), and ive heard, seen and exprienced why they are treated with hate and disgust- sending their children to beg for money, all dirty, not sending them school, marring them at 13, the men stay home and spend money only alcohol and cigarettes. its despicable. and since all the eastern european countries joined the EU, its been much easier for them to travel about to "greener pastures"...

when i was flying from copenhagen to romania, i saw a roma escorted by danish cops directly to the plane, they told him in enlish to behave, to which he answered with curses in romanian and a stupid grin...

im not going to generalize, some of them are honest hard working people, and ive also been helped by a girl and her dad to find my german shepard (which was stolen by a roma family btw), for no gain, just kindness, and when i wanted to reward them they refused to accept anything... so one shouldnt generalize.

its their culture thtas "flawed". but also the eastern european countries are at fault too, for not doing anything to help (but then again, they berarly help their own people, but thats another discussion) only make it worse for them.
15:06 April 27, 2011 by jimmy1988
Well some of them are working persons but that is very rare.

Discriminate? Why? They are receiving money from tax payers. What do they want more!
15:09 April 27, 2011 by Rick Methven
So all at once out come the posters in and out of Sweden who want to solve everything by deporting anybody. Now syftfel is saying that ALL Roma are criminals without any justification, just as he claims that ALL Muslims are terrorists.

In fact there is a long list of Roma who have been writers and musicians and other artists. These people have actually managed to achieve acknowledgement of their prowess even though in the majority of countries where they have lived for a thousand years or more they have suffered persecution.

Yes there are some Roma criminals, but a lot of crime is attributed to them because it is easy to do so. When I was a child, people used to say that gypsies stole young children.

There are good and bad in all cultures, discriminating or expelling one group of people or another from a society is never going to solve the problem, and making sweeping statements indicting one group of people is not helpful. Helping them to fit in and expand their capabilities is much more productive.
15:25 April 27, 2011 by ruimove
I think people dont read the articles, we are talking of a swedish minority not about emigrants, it's roma people in sweden for several generations.
16:26 April 27, 2011 by Tanskalainen
The Danish supreme court just ruled that Roma can not be deported from Denmark so........use the bloody bridge. No fuss, no muss.
21:55 April 27, 2011 by johnny1939
Yes, yes, good for the Danes!!!!
10:45 April 28, 2011 by HYBRED
@Rick Methven

RE: Post #14

Tis one of the more intellegent threads you have posted, and I agree with you.

And would like to add that things like deporting Roma's,(or any specific group) starts a bad trend. Because once they are gone, who is next, red heads, left handers? The current laws are not just particular to one group.
22:29 April 28, 2011 by Grokh
IF you are legal = then you get legal protection

IF you are ilegal then you get deported because you are breaking the laws by being ilegal in a country, its not racism.

France deported tons of roma not long ago and everyone called it racism.

Well if they were all illegal in the country then its not racism.

Getting tired of this minority thing, im a minority in sweden doesnt mean they should let me break the laws .
Today's headlines
Sweden worst in EU at getting foreigners jobs
Photo: Henrik Trygg/Imagebank Sweden

Sweden worst in EU at getting foreigners jobs

Swedish citizens are the most likely to be employed in the EU, but Sweden is among the very worst when it comes to getting non-EU citizens into work. READ  

Man arrested for burning partner's face
Photo: Linn Malmén/TT

Man arrested for burning partner's face

Police suspect that a man in western Sweden is responsible for the extreme burns on his partner's face. The man has been arrested on suspicion of aggravated assault - and potentially attempted murder. READ  

In Pictures: Conchita Wurst in Stockholm
Photo: Maja Suslin/TT

In Pictures: Conchita Wurst in Stockholm

Eurovision winner and LGBTQ idol Conchita Wurst is in Stockholm this week for Stockholm Pride - and joined Swedes at Skansen for a colourful summer sing-along. READ  

Stockholm holds colour contest for new metro
Photo: Joel Bagon

Stockholm holds colour contest for new metro

Stockholm's new metro line is not set for preliminary construction until 2016, and will not be completed until 2022 - but Swedes already have the chance to vote for the new line's colour. READ  

Sweden's heat wave officially over

Sweden's heat wave officially over

The heat wave that swept over Sweden recently has finally passed, meteorologists reported on Wednesday, promising cooler and more autumnal temperatures around the corner. READ  

Ukraine rebels release kidnapped Swede
Rebel tanks on the road to Horlivka in June. Photo: TT

Ukraine rebels release kidnapped Swede

The Swede who was kidnapped by pro-Russian rebels has been released after nearly three weeks of being held hostage - although no one knows where he is now. READ  

Stockholm Pride 2014
Stockholm Pride bars Sweden Democrats
Photos: Henrik Montgomery/Fredrik Persson/TT

Stockholm Pride bars Sweden Democrats

While a record number of ministers and party leaders will participate in the Stockholm Pride Parade this year, there are notable exceptions - including SD leader Jimmie Åkesson, who is not only 'uninterested' but banned. READ  

Gender neutral 'hen' enters dictionary
Soon 'hen' will be found on this page. Photo: The Local

Gender neutral 'hen' enters dictionary

The ever-controversial pronoun 'hen' has won its battle and is set to officially become part of the Swedish language. READ  

Pines, polska and magic: Urkult Music Festival
Photo: Danny Chapman/The Local

Pines, polska and magic: Urkult Music Festival

The Urkult music festival in northern Sweden may be less sex, drugs and rock'n'roll and more family fun, chai and polska dancing - but Danny Chapman says it’s one of the most magical Swedish experiences he has had. READ  

Presented by Stockholm Business Region
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
You want one of these. Photo: Skatteverket

Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm

When it comes to data-driven life, from daycare to healthcare, Sweden is in a league of its own. Above all, your personal number is the key that unlocks life in Stockholm. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Gallery
Stockholm Pride: Allsång på Skansen with Conchita Wurst
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching, June 26th - 28th. Get inside Stockholm's hottest nightclubs
Gallery
Top ten Swedish taboos
Society
Seven-year-old Swede cycles to Berlin
Blog updates

27 July

Approaching Stockholm (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I woke up in the comfort of my own little cabin on Eva and Rolf’s boat, it was 7:30am and I was feeling a bit groggy after a couple of beers with all the lovely locals the night before. The previous day had really taken its toll on my body and I was very stiff and..." READ »

 

24 July

Sharing our Pride: Celebrating Love & the LGBT Community! (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"It’s mid- July in Stockholm, and with much of the city on vacation, things can seem a little quiet – the streets, the bus, and the grocery store. One thing that has not paused for a summer break, though, is preparation for Stockholm’s Pride Festival, which will take place from July 28 to August 2...." READ »

 
 
 
Politics
'Gaza conflict needs help, not empty rhetoric'
Society
Swedes voted 'most beautiful' in the Nordics
Business & Money
Sweden demands EU clarity on Bitcoin tax
National
Swedish organic sales enjoy 'amazing' growth
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
Society
What's On in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching July 23
National
Swedish cops elect not to shoot 'angry elks'
Business & Money
New alcohol retail rules threaten micro-breweries
Gallery
People-watching Båstad
Business & Money
Sweden falls to third in global innovation index
Society
Swedish ornithologists keep webcam watch
Photo: Andreas Nordström/Image Bank Sweden
Gallery
Top ten Swedish beach hot spots
Tech
Swedish Wiki vet sets new content record
Photo: Fastighetsbyrån
Lifestyle
In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week
Photo: Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching July 15-16
Photo: Ola Ericson/Image Bank Sweden
Society
What's On in Sweden
Photo: Lisa Mikulski
National
Hope springs eternal for expat pet shop owner
Gallery
Princess Estelle steals limelight at mum's birthday
National
Swedes risk infants' lives by covering up prams
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

745
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se