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T HE ROMA COMMUNITY CENTRE is committed to: fundraiser artwork

  • Building community support for Roma in Canada
  • Public education regarding multiculturalism and human rights
  • Partnering with other organizations to work towards common goals
VISION: The Roma Community Centre (RCC) works to strengthen and unify Roma peoples across Canada in striving for self-determination, social justice, and human rights. We celebrate Roma cultural diversity, history, and achievements.
 
MISSION: The Roma Community Centre (RCC) serves the Roma community across Canada and seeks to build solidarity among a diverse Roma diaspora. The RCC provides settlement, education, legal services, and engages in outreach and advocacy. We also celebrate our culture and shared history. The RCC also works with the general public in combating anti-Roma racism and negative 'Gypsy' stereotypes and strengthening community partnerships in Canada and abroad.

Learn about us. Join us.


Current news and events...

  • Sunday, June 22, 2014 Annual General Meeting
    • Time: 2:00 to 5:00 PM
      Place: Roma Community Centre
      1092 Danforth Ave. Suite 5
      Join us for an afternoon of discussion, electing our Board of Directors, and socializing.
      As a member of the Roma Community Centre, you have a vote.
       
  • TheGypsyRebels May 18, 2014 Fundraising Concert for the Roma Community Centre
    • Sunday, May 18th – 4:00 - 11:00 PM
      at the Black Swan – 154 Danforth Ave.   (just east of Broadview Subway)
      Featured Bands: Tickets $15 – phone 416-546-2524 for details.
      This event will also feature a Silent Auction and a 50/50 Draw .
       
  • Judgment_In_Hungary May 1, 2, 4, 2014 Judgment in Hungary (HotDocs documentary)
    • Thu, May 1st at 5:30 PM – TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
      Fri, May 2nd at 11:00 AM – ROM Theatre
      Sun, May 4th at 3:45 PM – Scotiabank Theatre 7
       
      Judgment in Hungary details the two-and-a-half-year trial of four defendants accused of firebombing a Romani family and killing a five-year-old child. It examines forensic details to reveal an astonishing network of corruption and neglect. You can purchase tickets online for this HotDocs documentary.
       
  • RomaDay2014 April 8, 2014 The Shape of a Heart: A Gypsy love story
    • Tuesday, April 8th at 9:00 PM — Admission $10
      Revue Cinema — 400 Roncesvalles Ave. Google Maps
      Join the Roma Community Centre in celebrating International Roma Day
      with a documentary film featuring the Toronto Romani Community.
       
  • January 8, 2014 Immigration minister tells Ontario: Pay for refugees’ health care yourself
    • Ottawa Citizen: A week after Ontario began providing health care to many refugees, the federal government has firmly closed the door on either restoring the program it cut 18 months ago, or helping to pay for it... story by Elizabeth Payne
       
  • December 2, 2013 Law Times article confronts stereotypes
    • The December issue of Law Times carried an article – Time for lawyers to confront anti-Roma stereotypes – by Gina Csanyi-Robah and Sean Rehaag, an associate professor at Osgood Hall Law School. The Osgood Hall library recently hosted Roma Rising/Opre Roma – Portraits of a Community, an exhibit of 24 black-and-white portraits by photographer Chad Evans Wyatt. The thematic connection was stereotypes: the exhibit challenges misinformed negative stereotypes; the article challenges public remarks made by high profile legal professionals. Law Times is not available online, but interested individuals can read the article at professor Rehaag's faculty website .
       
  • CAZZAROLA - music! November 25, 2013 – CAZZAROLA! – book launch, live theatre, and music
    • Montreal author/musician/actor Norman Nawrocki will launch his new novel, CAZZAROLA! Anarchy, Romani, Love, Italy, with a solo theatre piece and live music inspired by the book. 
      CAZZAROLA! spans 130 years in the life of a family of Italians. They resist Fascism in Italy, including the recent wave of contemporary neo-Fascism sweeping Europe and the persecution of Roma refugees. CAZZAROLA! is also a love story about an Italian boy who falls for a Romani refugee girl from Romania.
    • Monday, November 25th at 7:00 PM – free admission
    • Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre
    • 1499 Queen Street West (Directions and map)
       
  • Papusza - Toronto Polish Film Festival November 16, 2013 — Papusza at the Toronto Polish Film Festival
    • True story of Papusza - the first Roma woman who put her poems into writing and published them, and therefore confronted the traditional female image in her community. The film follows Papusza’s life from birth to old age: arranged marriage as a small girl, her life in a gypsy tabor before, during and after second world war, then forced settlement in communist Poland and urban life in poverty. Her meeting with the Polish poet Jerzy Ficowski, who discovered her great talent for poetry and published her works, led to a tragic paradox: a famous poet living in poverty, rejected by her own community for betraying their secrets. — Co-sponsored by the Toronto Polish Film Festival and the Roma Community Centre
       
  • Church of the Holy Trinity November 10, 2013 — "Proud to Protect Refugees" week and opening of Roma Rising exhibit
    • Sunday, November 10th*
    • Church of the Holy Trinity – Directions and map
    • 10:30 AM – Eucharist with a brief Homily by Michael Creal
    • 12:00 noon – Gina Csanyi-Robah, Executive Director of the Roma Community Centre, will introduce the Roma Rising exhibit
    • This is the beginning of the Canadian Council for Refugees initiative, "Proud to Protect Refugees" week, and the opening of the Roma Rising photography exhibit at Holy Trinity. Located behind the Eaton Centre, the nearest subway stop is Dundas. *Note: The exhibit will be at the Church of the Holy Trinity until January 3rd.
       
  • bulldozing Roma November 07, 2013 — The Modern Persecution of the Roma People
    • Ronald Lee, Canadian Roma writer and activist and Gina Csanyi-Robaj (Roma Community Centre) discuss the discrimination and even violence faced by the Roma people from Eastern Europe to France and Canada. The second of two talks on the History and Persecution of the Roma People presented in collaboration with the Roma Art Centre, and moderated by the centre's president, Julius Csoka.
       
  • November 5, 2013 — CRS Seminar Series: Representing Roma: Critical Perspectives from Canada and Europe
    • Moderated by Gerald Kernerman, Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, York University
    • Speakers:
      Natasha Beranek, Fulbright Scholar, Centre for Refugee Studies, York University — The Ethnic Identification of Romani Individuals the Czech Republic: Individual Narratives from a Small Czech Town
      Gina Csanyi-Robah, Executive Director, Roma Community Centre — Anti-Gypsy Sentiment: A Canadian Roma response
      Paul St. Clair, Roma & Immigration Counselor, Culturelink Settlement Services — Canadian Response to Roma Claims
    • 2:30 – 4:00 PM on Tuesday, November 5th
    • Room 519, Kaneff Tower, York University
    • Directions and map
       
  • A People Uncounted - film November 3, 2013 — A People Uncounted — film screening for Holocaust Education Week
    • The Sarah and Chaim Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre and the Roma Community Centre together present A People Uncounted , a Canadian documentary on the Roma people, their colourful but often difficult lives, and how their present condition has been shaped by tragedies of the past. Gina Robah-Csanyi, Executive Director of the Roma Community Centre, will participate in a question and answer session following the film.
       
  • October 29, 2013 — Roma in Europe: Guilty until proven innocent?
    • The United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has issued a statement regarding 'non-Roma looking' children being removed from Roma families: Stigmatization of Roma communities as criminal is disturbing and dangerous, warns UN Independent Expert on minority issues (more...)
       
  • October 29, 2013 — From India to Europe: the Path of Roma History
    • Roma_arriving_tn Emerging from northwest India in the 11th century, the Roma traced a path to Europe, and by 1450 had crossed most of the continent. Lynn Hutchinson Lee (Roma Community Centre) and Julianna Beaudoin (Anthropologist, University of Western Ontario) discuss this rich and complex history. The first of two talks on the History and Persecution of the Roma People presented in collaboration with the Roma Art Centre, and moderated by the centre's president, Julius Csoka.
       
  • October 25, 2013 — For Roma Families, a Racist Myth Returns with a Vengeance
    • News of a little blond girl allegedly abducted by a Roma couple in Greece dominated headlines this week. The hysteria that ensued was shocking, playing on medieval myths and racist stereotypes.
    • "What we have seen to date is rumor run amok and an absence of political leadership."
          – Jim Goldston, executive director of the Open Society Justice Initiative
       
  • film event at temple September 22, 2013 – Never Come Back: documentary film event at Temple Emanu-El
    • Never Come Back tells the story of Canada’s Roma community and documents difficulties facing the Roma in Europe today.
    • Introduction by Rabbi Arthur Bielfeld, founder of JRAN, followed by views and Q&A with:
      • Karl Nerenberg, Documentary Director
      • Bernie Farber, Human Rights Activist and JRAN Board Member
      • Tibor Lukacs, Co-Founder of United Roma of Hamilton and community worker activist, featured in the film

       
  • September 19, 2013 – Roma Rising / Opre Roma – Portraits of A Community
    • This photo exhibit features 24 black-and-white portraits by American photographer Chad Evans Wyatt . The photos are of Canadian Roma working successfully in middle and professional class occupations.
       
  • September 9, 2013 – CBSC: Negative generalizations about ethnic group violates codes
    • The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) today released its decision concerning comments made about "Gypsies" by Ezra Levant during his program The Source on Sun News Network. The CBSC found the broadcast in violation of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' (CAB) Code of Ethics and Equitable Portrayal Code.
       
  • September 5, 6, 13, 2013 – An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker
    • An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker Toronto International Film Festival: Acclaimed director Danis Tanovic won the Grand Jury Prize at the Berlin Film Festival for this unflinching exposé of the prejudices faced by Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Roma minority, starring the real-life couple whose harrowing ordeal became a national scandal. ( screening dates and times )
       
  • 15th Annual Roma Community Centre Summer Family Picnic August 18, 2013 – 15th Annual Roma Community Centre Summer Family Picnic
    • Sunday August 18, 2013 – 1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
      Dufferin Park – 875 Dufferin St., Toronto
      A short walk south of the Dufferin subway station
      Bring your family and food and music to meet friends!
       
      — An invitation from the Board and Staff of the Roma Community Centre
       
  • A_People_Uncounted_screening August 2, 2013 – International Romani Holocaust/Porrajmos Commemoration Day – Toronto
    A People Uncounted: The Untold Story of the Roma film screenings co-presented by Kinosmith and the Toronto Roma Community Centre
    • Dates and times:
      • Fri, Aug 2 - 6:30 PM
      • Sat, Aug 3 - 3:15 PM
      • Sun, Aug 4 - 1:00 PM
      • Sun, Aug 4 - 6:15 PM
      • Mon, Aug 5 - 4:00 PM
      • Thu, Aug 8 - 6:30 PM
    • For more information and to view the trailer visit www.apeopleuncounted.com
      • Has played in over 30 festivals in 15 countries
      • Best Documentary Cinematography from the Canadian Society of Cinematographers
      • Winner of the Human Rights Award at the Festival des Libertés, Belgium
      • Winner of Best Film at the International Romani Film Festival, Hungary
      • Winner of the Light in Motion Award for Best Documentary at the Foyle Film Festival, Northern Ireland
      • Nominated for a 2013 Producers Guild of America Award for Outstanding Documentary Motion Picture Producers of the Year
    • Screenings will be at the Bloor Hot Docs Cinema MAP (Bloor St. just East of Bathurst; ample parking nearby)
    • Tickets available for advance purchase online at www.bloorcinema.com
       
  • July 30, 2013 Letter from Bob Rae re International Romani Holocaust/Porrajmos Commemoration Day
    • "The continuing struggle of Roma people against powerful discrimination reminds us all of a time when much of Europe was dominated by a truly hateful ideology...Vicious stereotypes continue to tarnish political debate in many places. Even some Canadian commentators perpetuate these myths. We must not allow this to happen without being challenged."
       
  • July 20, 2013 – Canada asylum hearing delayed in closely watched Roma case
    • Toronto (Reuters): Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board has put off until mid-July a hearing on an asylum claim by Hungarian Roma activist Viktoria Mohácsi, a former member of the European Parliament.
       
  • June 18, 2013 EU lawmaker to Canada asylum seeker: A Roma's long trek
    • Toronto (Reuters): Less than four years ago, Viktoria Mohácsi enjoyed the life of an international politician, eating at pricey restaurants in Brussels and winning awards as a human rights activist. Today, the 38-year old mother of three sleeps on the floor of a one-room basement apartment in Toronto and faces deportation. As a political asylum seeker, she hopes to convince Canada that the life of a former member of the European Parliament could be in danger in a democratic country like Hungary. (1,400 words, 4 photos)
    • Viktoria's political asylum hearing begins on Tuesday, June 18th, and the media around the globe are following her case: Chicago Tribune, Oman Daily Observer, Jakarta Globe, The Scotsman, NewsUK24, New York Times
    • Viktoria Mohácsi on Facebook
       
  • Doctors for Refugee Care June 17, 2013 – National Day of Action Against Refugee Health Cuts
    • Vancouver - Calgary - Edmonton - Saskatoon - Winnipeg - Kitchener - Hamilton - Toronto - Ottawa - Montreal - Halifax - St. John's – sponsored by Canadian Doctors for Refugee Care
    • TORONTO – 12:00 Noon – Monday, June 17th
    • Canadian Citizenship and Immigration office at 25 St. Clair Ave. East
    • We want to clearly show that we are individual health care workers concerned about the cuts to IFH. Come out and be counted. (If you are a healthcare worker, please wear a white lab coat.)
       
  • June 5th event at Holy Blossom Temple June 5, 2013 – Why the Roma? Supporting a Community’s Struggle for Justice
    • A panel discussion introduced by Rabbi Dow Marmur, Rabbi Emeritus of Holy Blossom Temple, and moderated by Mary Jo Leddy, 2011 recipient of the Gunther Plaut Humanitarian Award and founder of Romero House.
    • Panelists:
      • Bernie Farber - Social Activist, Former CEO of Canadian Jewish Congress
      • Anna Porter - Publisher of Key Porter Books, Author of Kasztner’s Train
      • Gina Csanyi-Robah - Executive Director of the Roma Community Centre, Educator, Human Rights Advocate
    • When & Where:
      • 7:30 - 9:00 PM – Wednesday, June 5, 2013
      • Holy Blossom Temple – 1950 Bathurst Street – Toronto
      • Reception and photo exhibit follow
         
  • English poster June 1, 2013 – Annual General Meeting – Roma Community Centre
    • Music - Discussions - Food - Tell us how to help you!
      Elect the 2013-24 Board of Directors (membership required to vote)
    • When & Where:
      2:00 - 4:00 PM on Saturday, June 1, 2013
      2340 Dundas Street West, #301 (large meeting room at CultureLink)
      POSTER in English and Romanes
       
  • May 17, 2013 – World Jewish Congress concerned about virulent racism in Hungary
    • Canadian Jewish News, reporting on the WJC plenary in Budapest Jewish and Roma Hungarians, members of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) say there is an urgent need to stem the tide of antisemitism and antiziganism, prejudice against Roma people, now spreading through much of central Europe.
       
  • poster for May 14th event at U of T May 14, 2013 – Roma Migration: A glance at the situation of Roma in Central and Eastern Europe and in Canada
    • Dr Vidra will present the findings of the research project entitled "Roma Migration to and from Canada: the Case of the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovakia" conducted by the CEU in cooperation with Czech, Slovak, Hungarian and Canadian researchers.
      • Guest Speaker: Dr Zsuzsanna Vidra – Centre for Policy Studies – Central European University, Budapest
      • Discussant: Dr Antonela Arhin – Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies – University of Toronto
    • When & Where
      • 2:00 - 4:00 PM – Tuesday, May 14, 2013 – Free and open to the public
      • U of T, Jackman Humanities Building, Room 100A
        170 St. George Street (Corner of St. George and Bloor – former Medical Arts Building)
         
  • April 23, 2013 – CBC Radio – As It Happens
    • Today – after months of controversy -- the Sun News Network goes in front of the CRTC. And it's got some explaining to do....As today's CRTC hearings got started, a group of Roma and their supporters protested outside. One of those supporters is Bernie Farber, a human rights activist and the former Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Jewish Congress. We reached Mr. Farber at his office in Toronto.
       
  • April 23, 2013 – Rally to oppose Sun Media's application for mandatory distribution on basic cable
    • Canada's Romani community and supporters will rally in front of the CRTC to demand
      • That the CRTC refuse Sun Media Corp.'s application for mandatory distribution on basic cable
      • That Sun Media fire Ezra Levant after his nationally broadcast anti-Roma commentary on the Sun News Network
    • Speakers include: Cheri Di Novo MPP | Bernie Farber (former CEO of the Canadian Jewish Congress) | Gina Csanyi-Robah (Roma Community Centre) | Borys Wrzesnewskyj (former MP) | Robi Botos (jazz musician)
      WHAT: Rally to oppose Sun News application to the CRTC
      WHEN: Tuesday, April 23, 2013 – 11:30 AM
      WHERE: CRTC Regional Office – 55 St. Clair Ave. East, Toronto
       
  • April 8, 2013 – Tweet from Justin Trudeau on International Roma Day
    • Today, on International Roma Day, we celebrate the rich Romani culture in Canada and their brave triumphs over persecution around the world. — Justin Trudeau, MP (@JustinTrudeau)
       
  • ROMA_COMMUNITY_GATHERING_April_8th_Flyer April 8, 2013 – Roma Community Gathering to celebrate Roma Community Day – Scarborough
    • We want to hear from you – talk, eat, and celebrate the Roma Community with music and snacks!
    • FREE: Hungarian food, translation, child-minding, and TTC tokens (provided with receipts/transfers)
    • 3:00 - 5:00 PM on Monday April 8th – International Roma Day
    • 90 Mornelle Court , Scarborough, ON – in the Community Room
       
  • April_8_2013_International_ROMA_Day April 8, 2013 – International Roma Day Film Screening – Revue Cinema (free event)
    • On April 8th, 1971, the UN officially recognized the Roma as a single ethnic group with a shared origin.
    • Join Peggy Nash, MP Parkdale-High Park. and Cheri Di Novo, MPP Parkdale-High Park and the Roma Community Centre at this film screening to celebrate Romani culture and raise awareness of the issues and challenges facing the Roma.
  • April 4, 2013 – Refugee Rights Are Human Rights
  • April 1, 2013 – Are EU Citizens who are Roma also Potentially Refugees outside the EU? – York University (free event)
    • European Union citizenship is supposed to provide all citizens of the Union with a right to live anywhere in Europe and to work. Why then do some EU citizens flee the whole of the EU and seek international protection in Canada? Do they seek protection outside the countries in other EU states and if so with what results? What are the circumstances which create concern for these groups of persons? Building on recent research carried out for UNHCR, Professor Guild will address these issues in her presentation.
  • March 21, 2013 – Toronto Star: Stephen Harper’s inconsistencies on hate laws: Siddiqui
    • The Stephen Harper Conservatives could have hardly imagined that one of their pet projects would come back to haunt them. Last summer, they axed Section 13 of the federal Human Rights Code, the provision prohibiting hate speech on grounds of race, religion, ethnicity, etc.   read more...
       
  • March 21, 2013 – J-Source: Ezra Levant apologizes for Roma 'slurs' six months later
    • More than six months after Ezra Levant ranted on his show about the Roma community – sparking outcry and a ongoing hate crime investigation – he and Sun News Network vice-president Kory Teneycke issued an on-air apology ... on the same day that Sun News Network submitted their final application to the CRTC in a bid to gain mandatory carriage on basic cable. – by Eric Mark Do   read more...
       
  • March 21, 2013 – The story behind Ezra Levant's 11th hour 'apology' for Roma rant
    • Karl Nerenberg in his Parliament Hill blog: Levant apologized, it seems, because he was facing possible charges under article 319 of the Criminal Code of Canada: "public incitement and willful promotion of hatred."   read more...
       
  • OurSchoolPoster_100 March 21, 2013 – FILM SCREENING for United Nations Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
    • In recognition of the United Nations Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, the Roma Community Centre presents Our School , an award-winning documentary, as an initiative of the Roma Rising/Opre Roma project encouraging Romani youth to defy negative stereotypes and break through the barriers of racism.
  • March 20, 2013 ‐ EMBASSY News: Hungary 'not very enthusiastic' about Canadian billboard campaign
    • Canadian government data cited indicating Hungarian asylum claims have dropped 98 per cent compared to the average between 2009 and 2012. – by Kristen Shane   read more...
       
  • March 20, 2013 "Why now?" asks Karl Nerenberg in his Parliament Hill blog
    • "Minister of Immigration Jason Kenney might be breathing a sigh of relief that Conservative ally, Sun News TV personality Ezra Levant waited until long after Kenney's refugee reform bill had passed before apologizing on air for slanderous comments he made last September about the Roma people." read more...
       
  • March 18, 2013 – BILL C-31 & Public Discourse on Diversity in Canada – University of Toronto
    • A panel discussion on changes to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act
      Moderator: Mary Jo Leddy – Panelists: Gina Csanyi-Robah, Bernie Farber, Angus Grant
    • Presented by the Diversity Committee of Massey College
    • 7:30 p.m., Monday, March 18th, 2013
    • Event details and registration
       
  • March 13, 2013 – Music fundraiser in support of the Roma Community Centre
    • Featuring four Romani bands – Julius Csoka & Robert Lakatos, Romani Rota, The Gypsy Rebels, UngroDrom – and an Art Auction
    • Lula Lounge, 7:00 - 11:00 PM, Wednesday, March 13, 2013 – event details
       
  • February 21, 2013 – Petition to the CRTC to stop "Fox News North" from becoming part of basic cable TV package
    • Avaaz.org has an online petition to stop "Fox News North" from becoming a mandatory part of the basic cable TV package.
    • Scroll down this page to October 24, 2012 to see the type of "provocative" content that has been broadcast by the Sun News Network.
       
  • February 21, 2013 – Toronto Star: Toronto declared 'sanctuary city' to non-status migrants
    • Toronto has made history by affirming itself as a "sanctuary city," the first Canadian city with a formal policy allowing undocumented migrants to access services regardless of immigration status.
    • Lack of accessible services for Roma in Toronto – Roma Community Centre presentation to the City of Toronto (4 min. video)
       
  • February 19, 2013 – Canadian Jewish News: Hungarian filmmaker fears for his children
    • Some Hungarian Jews are declaring their fear that the EU state is on the path toward an ultra-nationalistic regime bent on persecuting Jews and Roma, not unlike Germany in the early-to-mid 1930s. – Andy Levy-Ajzenkopf, Staff Reporter
       
  • February 11, 2013 – CBC reports on a landmark European Human Rights Court decision against Hungary (6 min.)
  • February 9, 2013 – The Roma of Hungary: A Canadian View , by Judy Young Drache
    • Judy Young Drache is a former senior public servant with 25 years of experience in the Canadian government's multiculturalism programs. She is President of the Canada-Hungary Educational Foundation and lives in Ottawa.
       
  • February 9, 2013 – A petition to protest divisive party politics at the Embassy of Hungary in Ottawa
    • "The signatories of this petition call for an end to blatant party politics at the Embassy of Hungary in Ottawa..."
       
  • February 1, 2013 – Huffington Post: Why We Can No Longer Call Canada an Advocate for Human Rights
    • "When the official opposition in Hungary, the fascist Jobbik party, appears to applaud neo-Nazi violence against Roma communities while demanding lists of Hungarian Jews, one wonders how Canada sees Hungary as 'safe'." Bernie Farber on how the United Nations and Amnesty International both scolded Canada last month over its human rights record.
       
  • February 1, 2013 – Karl Nerenberg: Canadian government to persecuted Roma people in Hungary: 'Stay home'
    • When Immigration Minister Kenney announced that he was including Hungary on the list of safe "Designated Countries of Origin" he was asked if was not worried that this might give comfort to groups in Hungary the Minister himself had described as "xenophobic nutbars."
       
  • January 31, 2013 – US Ambassador to OSCE issues statement on discrimination against Roma
  • January 30, 2013 – The Canadian Jewish News: Canada warns Hungarian Roma not to seek asylum
    • Canada is taking a proactive role in dissuading Hungarian and Roma asylum-seekers from choosing it as a place of refuge.
       
  • January 29, 2013 – ECHR rules Hungary must correct wrongful placement of Romani children
  • January 28, 2013 – Toronto Star: Letters to the Editor: Kenney's Roma tactics racist
    • "Mackenzie King...did not raise billboards in Germany saying something like: 'Kanada ist fur Juden verboten.'"
       
  • January 27, 2013 – Petition to the European Parliament re recognizing the Roma Holocaust
    • "We believe that Roma Holocaust/Samudaripen deserve full recognition, commensurate with the gravity of Nazi crimes..." (petition active in 75 countries)
       
  • January 25, 2013 – Toronto Star: Roma refugees: Canadian billboards in Hungary warn of deportation
    • Ottawa has launched an unprecedented billboard campaign in the Hungarian city of Miskolc, home of many Roma refugees, trumpeting Canada's rapid expulsion of failed asylum seekers.
       
  • January 24, 2013 – Christian Science Monitor: Canada tells Hungary's Roma: Do not seek asylum here.
    • The Harper government has launched an ad campaign in the Hungarian city of Miskolc – from which many Roma have migrated to Canada in recent years – warning of tougher immigration laws.
       
  • January 14, 2013 – The Canadian Jewish News: Protecting Roma refugees: A unique perspective
    • Gina Csanyi-Robah outlines the work of the Roma Community Centre and addresses the Jewish community. "We have come to each other's aid in our times of need in the past, and, thankfully, I have learned that our hands and hearts are still there now."
       
  • January 11, 2013 – Open Democracy: Roma inclusion in 2012: No respite in prejudice
    • "2013 is the European Year of Citizens, dedicated to the rights that come with EU citizenship. It seems utterly remote and removed from the reality facing millions of Roma across the Union."
       
  • January 11, 2013 – Zsolt Bayer calls for 'final solution'
  • January 5, 2013 – The Canadian Jewish News: The Holocaust. The Roma. Canadian refugees?
    • Avrum Rosenweig describes racism against Roma during the Holocaust, then visits present day Hungary. He cites Amnesty International on racism in Europe today, which conflicts with the Canadian Government's position that refugee claims from Hungary are largely bogus.
       
  • December 6, 2012 – CARL challenges legality of group designation – Ottawa
    • The Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (CARL) has issued a press release on the designation of 85 Romanian citizens as Designated Foreign Nationals. CARL challenges the legality of this as arbitrary and unconstitutional and offers contact persons for follow-up.
  • November 29, 2012 (Thursday) Strategies for Opposing Bill C-31
    • 7:30 PM | Church of the Holy Trinity | 10 Trinity Square, Toronto, ON | MAP
    • Panel presentation and discussion.
       
  • October 29, 2012 – Many questions, few answers for Toronto's Roma
    • "There is more to know as a result of the Roma Health Forum held a while ago," writes Joe Florito in his Toronto Star column.
       
  • nevercomeback_tn October 29, 2012 – Never Come Back! – Ryerson University - Rogers Communications Centre
      Why does Europe's largest minority group feel compelled to seek asylum in Canada?
    • Never Come Back! – a documentary film by Karl Nerenberg and Malcolm Hamilton
      Monday October 29, 2012 – 7:00 to 9:00 PM
      Ryerson University - Rogers Communications Centre
      80 Gould Street, RCC-204 lecture theatre   MAP
      $5-$10 (sliding scale - fund raiser for the Roma Community Centre)
       
    [TOP]
  • October 24, 2012 – Hate crime investigation launched surrounding Ezra Levant's Roma broadcast
    • The Canadian Journalism Project reports in detail on the hate crime investigation – story will be kept updated.
       
  • October 24, 2012 – Roma group's complaint against Ezra Levant prompts Toronto police investigation
    • "Const. Wendy Drummond confirmed Toronto police had received the complaint and were investigating the comments aired on Levant's Sun News show, The Source , on Sept. 5." — Jeff Green reporting for the Toronto Star.
       
  • October 18, 2012 – Roma stage public rally against far right in Hungary (Euronews video)
    • Hundreds of Roma have marched in eastern Hungary in a rare public protest against discrimination. Banners read, "We want peace, law and order and a Hungary without Nazis."
       
  • October 17, 2012 Hungarian Roma refugee claimants targeted in CBSA report
    • CBC story on the Canadian Border Services Agency report and how Roma community and refugee advocates call the report 'racial profiling'.
       
  • October 17, 2012 – Canadian Roma stand in Solidarity with Hungary's Roma against Fascist Demonstration
    • Canada's Roma stand in solidarity with Hungary's Roma when the Jobbik party holds a fascist, racist, and hateful rally in Miskolc, Hungary.
       
  • October 17, 2012 – Roma groups to stage anti-Jobbik counter-demonstration in Eastern Hungary
    • Roma groups are preparing to stage the biggest demonstration of recent times in Miskolc on October 17, Aladár Horváth, head of the Civil Rights Movement for the Republic, announced at a press conference on Friday.
       
  • October 15, 2012 – Seeking justice for Canada's Roma by responding to hate speech in the Canadian media (PDF of statement)
    • On Thursday October 11, 2012, Toronto's Roma Community Centre officially reported a hate crime to the Toronto Police Services and an investigation is now underway.
       
  • October 13, 2012 – Roma in Hungary feel persecuted but they have nowhere to turn – feature story (4,000 words)
    • Toronto Star story on the desperate situation of Roma people in Hungary, the failure of police protection there, and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney's statements and policies.
       
  • October 13, 2012 – Failed refugee claimants find sanctuary in Toronto churches – feature story (1,500 words)
    • The Toronto Star reports on how four Toronto churches have agreed to hide asylum-seekers whose refugee claims have been rejected and others say they are considering the request — includes comments on Jason Kenney's policies: "People with a conscience," says Mary Jo Leddy, "just can't slam shut the door on people."
       
  • October 12, 2012 – How Europe's Roma problem became ours
    • Chris Selley writes in the National Post about how in Canada, if nowhere else, Roma must continue to have an honest chance at living honest lives.
       
  • October 11, 2012 – Online petition protests award to Jason Kenney
    • A letter that will be delivered to Haifa University, protesting its decision to award an Honorary Doctorate to Jason Kenney, Minister of Immigration. More than 1,000 people have signed. You can add your name to the petition.
       
  • October 11, 2012 – Roma Community Centre opposes Haifa University award to Jason Kenney (PDF of statement)
    • The Roma Community Centre has specific reasons for being opposed to Haifa University giving an award to Canadian Immigration Minister Jason Kenney.
       
  • October 5, 2012 Up in Arms: Doctors protest for Refugee health care – 15 min. Global TV documentary
    • They are unlikely protesters – doctors – unaccustomed to yelling slogans. They say it's the biggest, political action in Canadian medical history – and they're up in arms for what they say is a case of pure government bullying of the most vulnerable people in Canada…the refugees seeking asylum here. Carolyn Jarvis reports.
       
  • October 4, 2012 – Roma Health Forum takes aim at fallout from misinformation and ignorance
    • 200 people from 118 agences attended the recent Roma Health Forum – Joe Fiorito shares his notes
       
  • September 25, 2012 – Hating the Jew, hating the 'gypsy'
    • Bernie M. Farber, Nate Leipciger and Avrum Rosensweig write to the National Post regarding Ezra Levant's hateful broadcast on Sun News Network
       
  • September 25, 2012 – Who are you calling bogus?
    • "...it became obvious to everyone that his 'consultation' with the community was, well, bogus." – Cynthia Levine-Rasky describes in Canadian Dimensions magazine how Jason Kenney arrived unannounced at the Roma Community Centre to ask about abandoned claims, then cut off a speaker before she could finish her answer.
       
  • September 17, 2012 – The Western Rise of Hate The Agenda with Steve Paikin
    • TVO program explores what drives ethnic hatred and why history's lessons don't seem to resonate.
      You can download the audio podcast to listen in. (12 MB, 35 min. segment, shift-click or right-click to save)
    • A Childhood Lesson in Hate The Inside Agenda Blog: guest post by Gina Csanyi-Robah, Executive Director of the Roma Community Centre
       
  • September 17, 2012 – My apologies, as a Canadian, to the Roma people
    • A family physician comments on the premiere of Just the Wind in Canada
       
  • September 15, 2012 – Stop vilifying Roma refugees
    • "Ethnic vilification and stereotyping are historically proven evils," comment law school professors
       
  • September, 2012 – Threatened and Intimidated – Hungary today from the perspective of a Hungarian-Jewish woman living there (PDF of report with links - shift-click or right-click to save)
    • From the preface: 'Above all I try to ensure that others become aware...to ensure that the political situation doesn't get even worse...if there is no effective attempt to curb neo-Nazi activities.'
      – Eszter Garai-Édler – Budapest, September 8, 2012
    • Two links from the report: The hunters and the hunted , Hungary neo-Nazis: Cash for info
       
  • August 28, 2012 – important recent articles
  • July 18, 2012 – Killing time: The lethal force of anti-Roma racism – Europe
  • June 26, 2010 – The doctor who risked his reputation to oppose Bill C-31
    • Bernie Farber describes a doctor's opposition to Bill C-31 and goes on, "Canada has always been a nation that embraced immigrants and refugees. The changes that come into effect at the end of this month return us to a time where insensitivity to our fellow human being permeated society. We ought not to allow this to happen. Be like Dr. Keefer and speak out."
       
  • testimony2012 June, 2012 – Testimony: A Roma family on why they came to Canada (8 minute video)
    • A Hungarian Roma family describes what it was like back home .
       
      As part the European Union, Hungary is considered a "Safe Country" where the rights of ethnic and religious minorities are protected under the law. The stories of the Hungarian Roma who flee institutional discrimination and physical violence reflect a very different reality.
       
      The majority of rural Roma in Hungary live in far worse conditions than 20 years ago. Segregation and marginalization face the younger generation, as thousands flee their homeland in search of a better future.
       
  • June 22, 2012 – Hon. Mobina S. B. Jaffer speaking at the third reading of Bill C-31
    • "Once this bill is passed, there will be a three-tier system for refugee claimants applying for asylum in Canada... Not only does it fail to strengthen our current immigration system, it also contains provisions that are unconstitutional and that are in direct contradiction with Canada's international obligations."
      Senator Jaffer's full speech is available online.
       
  • Gina_award_tn Gina Csanyi-Robah recognized for service to Roma community
    • Roma Community Centre Executive Director Gina Csanyi-Robah has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition of her service to the Roma community in Canada. In accepting the award, she acknowledged the many volunteers and donors who support the Roma community, "It has been wonderful seeing so much of a positive outpouring from Canadians."
       
      Gina was recently interviewed by Anna Maria Tremonti on CBC's The Current regarding Bill C-31. listen on YouTube
       
  • Ottawa – Bill C-31
    Brief presented by the Roma Community Centre to the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration
    • Gina Csanyi-Robah, Executive Director of the Roma Community Centre, appeared before the committee reviewing Bill C-31.
    • Poster on the implications of Bill C-31 for Roma refugees
       
  • Working paper available from The Centre for European Policy Studies
    • The Incomprehensible Flow of Roma Asylum-Seekers from the Czech Republic and Hungary to Canada
      abstract (for PDF of 45-page report, use One-Click Download)
       
  • euronews | talk: Human rights in Europe is getting worse, says Commissioner
    • Council of Europe Human Right Commissioner Thomas Hammarberg speaks frankly about the worsening human rights picture in Europe as his six-year term comes to a close. YouTube video (9:53)
  • Viktória Mohácsi: Confronting Hate Crimes Against Roma
  • Op-ed piece in the February 28, 2010 Vancouver Sun
    • It's wrong to shut the door on European refugees — "There is a race to the bottom in refugee law around the globe," comments Catherine Dauvergne, a UBC law professor, "We need not win it." She describes three things wrong with the immigration omnibus bill and how, in an attempt to avoid political costs, it imposes a cost in human rights.
  • Just the Wind wins Amnesty prize and Silver Bear at Berlin International Film Festival
    • BERLIN - February 18, 2012 - Bence Fliegauf's Just the Wind , a film based on the 2008-09 serial killings of Hungarian Roma including a young boy, has won the Amnesty Film Prize , awarded by Amnesty International for the best human rights film. The film was also runner-up for the Jury Grand Prix, taking the Silver Bear Award .

Recent and still relevant...

  • July 26, 2012 – Trust fund established for family of hit-and-run victim – Toronto/Hamilton
    • Eleven-year-old Laszlo Balogh was killed when family's minivan was rear-ended by a tractor trailor in a hit-and run accident on the QEW last week. Several other family members were seriously injured in the crash.

      The family could use community support to make it through this terrible tragedy. The came here from Hungary seeking asylum, and it could be another year before their case is heard. Meanwhile, they need to heal and survive.

      A special account, the Laszlo Balogh Trust, has been set up at the CIBC branch at Dundas & Bloor. You can make a donation through any CIBC branch if you specify Account #2339838 and branch Transit #06022. (Print this webpage to take with you. Donations can also be made through the Donate button at the top left of this webpage.)

  • July 11, 2012 – editorial cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator
    • Give me your tired, your poor
      Your huddled masses yearning to be free
      Deny them public health care
      Then thank me for it     jasonkenney.ca
       
  • envelope_PM June 25, 2012 – Send Prime Minister Stephen Harper your 59 cents (2 minute video)
    • The 59 Cents Campaign is asking Canadians to place 59 cents in an envelope and send it to Prime Minister Harper.
      Office of the Prime Minister
      80 Wellington Street
      Ottawa, ON
      K1A 0A2
      On the back of your envelope, you can write:
      "The cost per Canadian to give refugees urgent health care is 59 cents... Here's mine."
      Your 59 cents will send a message that you do not accept the Government's decision to cut portions of refugee healthcare by means of the Ministerial Order of Hon. Jason Kenney, published April 25, 2012. This is the cost per Canadian to keep the Federal Interim Health Program open for refugees.
       
      You don't need a stamp. Postage to Members of Parliament is free.
       
      You can also help by liking the Fifty Nine Cents Campaign on Facebook.
       
  • Hill Dispatches - Rabble.ca - Tuesday, April 24, 2012:
  • Op-ed piece in the November 6, 2011 Sunday Star
  • A People Uncounted (documentary film)

    A People Uncounted - documentary film A People Uncounted , a documentary produced by Canadians Tom Rasky, Len Binder and Marc Swenker (directed by Aaron Yeger) premiered at the Montreal World Film Festival in August.

    Ceija Stojka's tattoo during the Holocaust The film tells the story of the Roma, commonly referred to as Gypsies, a people who have been both romanticized and vilified in popular culture and who have endured centuries of intolerance and persecution in Europe (an estimated 500,000 were murdered during the Holocaust). A People Uncounted documents their colorful but often difficult lives, including how their present state has been shaped by the tragedies of the past.

    Filmed in 11 countries and featuring dozens of Roma – Holocaust survivors, historians, activists, musicians – the film brings Romani history to life through the rich interplay of their poetry, music, and compelling firsthand accounts. As ethnic intolerance flares up across Europe, A People Uncounted sheds light on a unique culture while presenting the Roma tale as emblematic of the world's legacy of racism and genocide.

    The film has an original score by Robi Botos , and is edited by Kurt Engfehr (Bowling for Columbine, Fahrenheit 911) .

    Read the Montreal Gazette review of A People Uncounted.


  • Roma at risk WikiLeaks (link to cable)
    • A new study by the think tank Political Capital concludes that intolerance is increasing in Hungary — there has been an increase in extremist rhetoric and violent incidents targeting the Roma community.
  • Taking the law in their hands - World - Macleans.ca
    • A Macleans magazine article describes how the far-right Jobbik party is targeting the Roma. "Nine people, including two children, were killed in 49 attacks on Roma communities in Hungary between January 2008 and April 2011, according to the European Roma Rights Centre."

Past news and events...


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