Within days, local authorities in Baia Mare, Romania will move around 70 Roma families from their homes in the Craica settlement to an office building. Others who have refused to accept this relocation risk homelessness. Those not registered as residents of Baia Mare will likely be sent back to their places of origin. If these plans go ahead the Romanian authorities would be violating the rights of these familes to adequate housing, and their rights to choose where they live.
Approximately 300 Romani families (around 2,000 individuals) are at risk of losing their homes following notice of eviction and demolition orders being delivered to 3 settlements in Baia Mare - Craica, Garii and Pirita. The eviction can begin at any time after 3 May.
On two previous occasions we've opposed plans to evict Roma and other socially disadvantaged people from Baia Mare. Most recently in August 2011, the current mayor of Baia Mare announced plans to evict hundreds of Roma who did not have identity papers registered in Baia Mare. Pressure from Amnesty and many other NGOs, as well as from the US Embassy in Bucharest, ensured that those plans were dropped.
There are almost 2.2 million Roma in Romania – making up about 10 per cent of the total population but discrimination remains widespread and entrenched. Forcibly evicted Romani communities do not just lose their homes; they also lose their possessions, their friends and their access to work, schools and other state services.
Take action - email the Mayor of Baia Mare and tell him to stop the eviction.
- halt the evictions until genuine consultation with the affected communities has been conducted in order to identify all feasible alternatives to evictions and resettlement options, and until adequate alternative housing, compliant with requirements under human rights law, is provided to all persons affected
- ensure that any evictions of the communities currently living in Craica, Pirita and Garii areas are carried out only as a last resort and in full compliance with international human rights standards
- ensure that people are not forcibly sent back to their places of origin or prevented from returning
If you'd like any advise on how to phrase your email, have a read of our quick guide on writing appeal letters. Thanks for taking action.
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