Italy: Supreme Court strikes down anti-Roma policy for good
Italy’s Supreme Court yesterday declared an anti-Roma policy - the so-called “Nomad emergency” - unlawful and unfounded, a move Amnesty International has hailed as a key victory in the struggle to end discrimination against Roma communities around the country.
The court’s decision upheld a November 2011 ruling against the state of emergency declared by the government in May 2008, which has led to widespread human rights violations and increased discrimination against Roma people.
Roma were targeted in an unlawful census based on ethnicity and deprived of safeguards against forced evictions, which resulted in thousands being made homeless in several Italian cities. They were also increasingly segregated in camps set up by the authorities.
Jezerca Tigani, Deputy Europe and Central Asia Programme Director at Amnesty International, said:
“The Nomad emergency ushered in an all-time low in Italy’s discriminatory treatment of Roma. We are delighted that the country’s highest court has finally upheld the rights of Roma people.”“
The new Italian government must act on this decision and end forced evictions, segregation in camps and exclusion from social housing.”