There is hidden discrimination

Author: Rudolf Zajda
Location: Brno
Jan is married with two children, and is presently employed as a Romany Adviser to the County office of Chomutov.
"I began to be active in Romany issues right after the 1989 revolution.
My experience is that Roms are not proud enough of being Roms. During the past regime we could not point to our nationality. Around two years after the Revolution we started to realize that we can do something to improve our own situation. This was never possible before.
Reform is going very slowly, though. The state does show some interest in deal with the problem. But lots of Czechs are sponging on our issues. This does not help stand on our own feet.
The job of Romany Adviser is quite difficult, and each Rom has to be able to assert herself or himself. It is simply not true that the state authorities are willing to employ Roms, as you read all over. There is hidden discrimination: even racism. And the preparation for the job of Romany Adviser is quite brief; Advisers with only an elementary education are sometimes not able to handle some aspects of the job. At this point the Romany Adviser program is not working the way it should.
I also work in civic associations, which is good. I think that Czech civic associations should cooperate with Romani civil associations to make them strong. But some civic associations are privileged. Some are automatically given money, and others have great difficulty getting funded. For myself, as the only Rom on various committees, I insist that Romany civic associations get funding.”
Jirka [] responded on 30 September 2001:
Dear Sir,
I am a Rom, I am not a member of any party or Romany movement. And why is that? I can’t stand working with a person like Mr.Scuka. And why ? I never liked Communists and Mr. Scuka used to be a very active Communist and I far too well remember him singing odes to the Communist party. And this is not all I remember.
Do you think it is easy to get among Romany activists? It is not. They do not let you among them, it is only for their relatives and friends to be activists.
They don’t allow you to criticize what they do. Most of them are only looking out for their own benefits.
There should be elections for Romany activities and the best of us should be elected. Are they?????? Who votes for them? I’ve asked a lot of Roma and no one knows. There are Roma who are very creditable, you are right- but there are only a few. Roma should be sure of themselves and do their work. If we want to succeed in something then we have to work hard and for free. Work for the people.

One Response to “There is hidden discrimination”

  1. Your story is not very amusig and seems to lack attention

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