Mr. Sergiy Ponomariov: "Procedure of obtaining identification documents is too complicated in Ukraine and the roma community most of all suffers from that"

19/11/2015 17:19

It was noted by the head of division of non-discrimination of the Secretariat of the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights delivering welcome speech at opening of a two-day Expert seminar on access of roma in Ukraine to identification documents and certificates on civil registration which began its work today, on November 19, 2015, at the Office of the Commissioner.

"Ombudsman allocated a problem of ensuring the rights of roma as a priority in 2012. Since that representatives of Office with assistance of representatives of the organizations of civil society systematically carry out monitoring visits to places of compact accommodation of roma community, the analysis of the legislation for the purpose of definition what exactly impedes  roma in access to obtaining documents. The carried-out monitoring showed that a situation in different regions of Ukraine is distinct. So, the most difficult situation is in the Transcarpathia, Odessa and Cherkassy regions, in other regions these problems also exist, however less sharply", – Mr.Sergiy Ponomariov informed.

According to him, the situation is complicated also by mistrust of roma to public authorities and the passive attitude of public authorities to problems of roma community. Therefore, it is necessary to elaborate such position of public authorities which would ensure activization of contacts with roma community on the basis of mutual trust.

The senior adviser for roma and sinti of the OSCE/ODIHR Ms. Miriam Karol, in turn, is convinced that civil registration has to be available to all that surely assumes simplification of procedures in obtaining documents. In this regard, the expert paid special attention to a difficult situation with roma moved from Crimea and Eastern Ukraine.

"Our main goal is to eliminate obstacles which prevent to receive by roma documents. Internally displaced roma face special problems due to the lack of the documents on registration of a civil status and the valid registration in a residence confirming their movement therefore they can't confirm the status and therefore receive humanitarian aid. For them also access to housing, hiring, participation in political and public life is complicated", – Ms. Miriam Karol emphasized.

The chief specialist of the State migration service of Ukraine Ms. Tatyana Sirenko also noted that the status of roma in Ukraine remains problem.

"The Roma national minority has no statehood because of that it is vulnerable around the world. In Ukraine among the main problems that roma face are absence of documents, obstacles to quality education, unacceptable living conditions, social isolation. In the solution of problems of roma the extraordinary role is played by public organizations and activists, local governments, and necessary also carrying out information and educational work for increase of awareness of roma in the rights is important", – Ms. Tatyana Sirenko noted.

The seminar is held by Point for contacts concerning roma and sinti of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) in cooperation with the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights with assistance of the International Renaissance Foundation.