Permanent Mission of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, OSCE and other International Organizations in Vienna

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OSCE/ODIHR Delegation visited the Czech Republic

The seminar co-organized with the NGO Slovo 21 brought together around 50 participants, including government officials, Roma parents, and representatives from civil society and the international community.

They discussed the implementation of recommendations from ODIHR’s report following a 2012 field assessment visit to the Czech Republic and reviewed measures taken by Czech national and local authorities.

“Education is a fundamental human right. It is a key vehicle by which economically and socially marginalized communities, such as Roma, can lift themselves out of poverty and participate as full citizens,” said Mirjam Karoly, Head of the ODIHR Contact Point for Roma and Sinti Issues.

“I am aware of the unacceptably high number of Roma children placed in so-called ‘practical schools’, which are intended for children with mild learning disabilities. It is impossible that one-third of children from a specific ethnic group could suffer from such disabilities. Equal access to education is one of my key priorities, and I am ready to work with the Ministry of Education on specific measures to address this problem, said Jiří Dienstbier, Minister of Human Rights, Equal Opportunities and Legislation.

The 2012 report “Equal Access to Quality Education for Roma Children: Field Assessment Visit to the Czech Republic” can be found at www.osce.org/odihr/96661.