Saturday, December 26, 2009



2ND International meeting of Roma women organized by the Council of Europe, the Greek Ministry of Interior, Decentralization and E-Government, the Greek Inter-Municipal Rom Network (ROM Network) and the International Roma Women’s Network (IRWN)

Athens, 11-12 January 2010

Give voice to the voiceless was the aim of the Roma women’s gatherings organised under the auspices of the Council of Europe for the last five years. During these meetings Roma women voiced the plight of their communities for social justice and for the protection of their human rights. They pointed out their vulnerable condition within and outside their communities, established networks and became valuable interlocutors for governments and international organisations.

International organisations such as the European Union (FRA), OSCE/ ODIHR and Governments ( Sweden ) have joined the Council of Europe and in making so these meetings have become the reference for the Romani women movement. In 2007, in their Stockholm meeting the Roma women expressed the wish that their future meetings would take the form of an annual meeting hosted by a government.

Supporting the idea of the emancipation and involvement of Roma women, Greece now takes over the organisation of the 2nd annual meeting of the Roma women. The Athens meeting will focus on how Roma women will contribute to take up various challenges such as changing negative perceptions of Roma women in the media, eliminating harmful practices such as the early marriages and forced sterilization or promoting entrepreneurship and economic empowerment of Roma women.

The Greek authorities, the Swedish Minister for Integration and Gender Equality, Mrs Nyamko Sabuni and the Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General Mrs Maud de Boer-Buquicchio will address the meeting.

Contact info for international participants


Roma and Travellers Division
DG III Social Cohesion
Council of Europe

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