SDS requests emergency session to discuss Roma-related concerns

Ljubljana, 15 January - The largest opposition party has requested an emergency session of the parliamentary Commission for Petitions, Human Rights and Equal Opportunities to discuss Roma-related security concerns in southeastern Slovenia.

A number of municipalities in the Dolenjska region have been raising concern about the rising crime rates, according to the Democrats (SDS).

One of them, the town of Ċ entjernej, has also expressed concern about school violence incidents with Roma community members being the perpetrator, the SDS said on Monday.

"Numerous criminal offences, including theft and public order and traffic offences, often occur in these municipalities."

The party went on to spotlight the issue of Roma children missing school classes, which increases the risk of unemployment and poverty. Furthermore, the local communities have been reporting crops and livestock theft.

The SDS noted that the coalition rejected several bills tabled by almost a dozen mayors from the southeast and the Posavje region further to the north whose aim was to improve the situation of Roma children by incentivising them to go to school.

The government has also failed to draft legislative changes by the end of 2023 to address these issues and improve the integration of the Roma, as urged by the parliamentary Committee on Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Disability.

The SDS therefore expects the government and coalition to step up their efforts to tackle these issues and prepare the amendments.

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© STA, 2024