null Roma Youth Conference 2021

The Roma Youth Conference, organized in cooperation by the European Youth Centre Budapest, Phiren Amenca and the National Youth Council, took place on 8 November, with the aim of strengthening the social participation and the participation in public life of Roma young people. The Minority Ombudsman was represented at the conference by Tamás Török, Head of Secretariat, as a speaker at a panel discussion and a professional participant in a workshop, assisted by Katalin Enikő Béres, Senior International Officer.

The conference featured presentations and panel discussions in a hybrid format, online and offline, and hosted participants from the Roma civil society and from the international and Hungarian institutions active in the field of youth. In addition to professionals and decision-makers, a large number of Roma and non-Roma young people attended the event, which had an active press interest.

Following the presentations, there was a very constructive discussion about the representation of Roma youth in national and international youth organizations and initiatives, moderated by Atanas Stoyanov, from Phiren Amenca.

Tamás Török, Head of the Secretariat of the Minority Ombudsman, participated in a panel discussion on Equality, Access, Social Inclusion and Public Participation of Roma Young People in Hungary in the light of their fundamental and civil rights. Attila Sztojka, the government commissioner for Roma relations, and Anna Orsós, a staff member at the European Roma Rights Center, also took part in the panel discussion. The moderator of the panel discussion was Fruzsina Balogh, a member of the Civil College Foundation. During the discussion, the Head of the Secretariat spoke about the roles and responsibilities of the Ombudsman and the Deputy Ombudsman, the different areas of law enforcement and advocacy, and the current state and challenges of the existing Roma policies. During the panel discussion, participants also described in detail the problems and challenges they face in their work, mentioning some exemplary cases on the subject, followed by a constructive discussion on school and territorial segregation and the current trend towards hate speech and hate crime.

The conference provided an opportunity for young participants to share their experiences, gain insight into youth and Roma strategies that affect them, ask questions and share their views on this topic with the decision-makers. Leaders, representatives and volunteers of Roma youth organizations, as well as Roma and non-Roma young people and professionals interested in the field of Roma and / or social inclusion, were able to have a constructive discussion about the challenges, opportunities and good practices that affect them.