September 20, 2010
As a convinced European, I appreciate the recent concerns over the handling by France of the situation of Roma citizens, all the more so because I am also Romanian of origin.
However, I am also a person who lived for a limited period of time in close proximity to Roma communities. As such I also witnessed the great challenges any government would have in adequately integrating Roma communities.
I believe a lot more can be done on the part of countries of origin to understand the Roma culture and find better ways to provide them with equal opportunities.
But I also believe that there is a flip side to the same coin: the willingness of the Roma communities to conform with the norms of modern society. And it is this side of the coin that I do not see discussed much in the media or elsewhere. I believe it will benefit us all if the matter is presented in a balanced way.Author : Letters to the EurActiv editor