Dialogue is fundamental in fighting discrimination and marginalization, and in building bridges across different parts of the society, Keith Whitmore, President of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe has said.
He urged territorial self-government bodies to implement inclusive and socially responsible Roma policies.
“Since in many Council of Europe countries, the local and regional authorities are in charge of housing, social care and educational establishments, local politicians do have a specific responsibility in this respect,” Mr. Whitmore said.
He noted that “through constant dialogue with all relevant stakeholders, it should be possible to achieve pragmatic solutions to provide Roma people equal access to housing, healthcare, education and jobs.”
“Together with our partners, the Congress is currently establishing a new network for Roma inclusion at the grassroots level, which was conceived at last year’s European Summit of Mayors in Strasbourg and will be launched in September,” Mr. Whitmore added.