Roma Women Against Antigypsyism
Our main idea is to empower Roma women with basic knowledge on discrimination, various types and levels of it and to encourage them in order to be able to recognize discriminatory behaviours and take a stand against them. As the topic of discrimination among Roma women is quite a sensitive one, we should respect the information/content/conversation confidentiality and the ethical code.
Discrimination, Human Rights, Roma community
5 – 10 participants
Using media reports that are directly linked to Roma communities and Roma women participants discuss the general ideal of Roma community within the civil society, participants give their own examples of encounters with discriminatory behaviours and create ideas related to the topic of how to deal with various types of discrimination.
- No discrimination
- Freedom of thought and religion
- Right to education
- To make Roma women recognize various types of discrimination
- To make Roma women re-think their role within the society and their community
- To develop strategies that would make it possible for Roma women to address the issues of discrimination
- To prevent discriminatory views among Roma community
- Articles from media in which Roma community is mentioned (1 article per participant)
- Cards on which the types of discrimination are listed
- Search and print the articles from media based on the number of participants
- Create cards on which various types of discrimination are listed
- Create the evaluation questionnaire
- Ask the group of participants how they imagine discrimination? Make them think of examples of discrimination that they’ve heard of. Try to guide the participants to think of the definition of discrimination. If they cannot come up with a conclusion, present the following definition: treating a person or particular group of people differently, especially in a worse way from the way in which you treat other people, because of their skin colour, sex, sexuality, etc.
- Distribute the media articles (one article per participant) that are addressing the Roma community. Ask the participants to individually read the articles and mark the words that they think are being discriminatory towards Roma community. Give the participants 15 minutes to read the article.
- Ask the participants to present their discoveries of discrimination of Roma within the articles. At this point usually Roma women recognize that the media mostly spreads negative information about Roma, which later-on reflects on the whole community, not just the individuals mentioned in those articles. Ask what the most common stereotypes about Roma are and ask if they ever get discriminated in relation to those.
- Ask the participants to form two groups and distribute the ‘discrimination cards’ to both (same cards for both groups). Ask the first group to discuss various types of discrimination in relaton to civil society and the other group to discuss the same types of discrimination in relation to Roma community. Ask participants to write the examples on the flipchart and present their experience with discrimination to others.
- Discuss the outcomes and ask a question of how they could prevent discrimination in various environments? What can they do as individuals? What can they do as a community?
- Conclude the workshop with informing the participants on how to report discrimination, based on the national laws in order to make them aware that they can legally report incidents in which they are being discriminated.
DEBRIEFING AND EVALUATION:
- Was it difficult to define the term discrimination? Did you have the ability of defining it by yourself, do you now have a better understanding of what discrimination is?
- Did you easily find examples of various types of discrimination? If yes, why do you think that’s the case?
- Was it easier to work in a group or individually?
- Do you think stereotypes are linked to discrimination? How?
- Do you think Roma women are being more discriminated than male members of Roma community?
- Do you ever consider you’re being discriminatory towards someone? Why?
Would you ever consider reporting discrimination? If no, why wouldn’t you do it?
- Distribute overall questionnaire through which the participants can evaluate their satisfaction with the activity.
TIPS FOR FACILITATORS:
As the activity is meant for female members of Roma community, we would recommend that the activity is facilitated by a woman/women, as it is going to be easier to create the mutual trust, needed for Roma women to share their own experience related to discrimination.
Many Roma women did not have a chance to obtain the basic education, therefore many have problems with literacy. Provide interpreter if needed or facilitate the activity with at least one more person who will be able to support the participants while reading and analysing the media articles.
When searching for media articles, try to find at least one or two that write about Roma community positively.
When discussing the discrimination within the Roma community, be careful not to cross the line as this is a very sensitive and personal topic. If you see that the participants aren’t being comfortable with the way in which the discussion is leading, make sure to change the flow of the discussion.
Provide the participants with information about how to report discrimination in a simple way that they will understand, lead them through the process of reporting discrimination if needed.
SUGGESTIONS FOR FOLLOW-UP:
Encourage the group to further explore the discrimination in their daily lives. Give them your contact in case they’ll face discrimination they’d like to discuss in the future or in case they would ever need assistance while reporting discrimination.
List of relevant articles: