EU funds contributing to Roma inclusion
High-Level Event - Slovakia 23 - 25 May 2011
Conclusions: High Level Event on the Structural Funds contribution to Roma integration in Slovakia
The EU and the Member States have the responsibility to improve the situation of the marginalised Roma community. The inclusion of the Roma will have important human, social but also economic benefits for our society and is an essential building block of the Europe 2020 growth strategy.
A powerful EU framework of legislative, financial and policy coordination tools is available to support Roma inclusion, but more needs to be done.
The EU Structural Funds (European Social Fund and the European Regional Development Fund) as well as the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development constitute the major part of the Community budget and can be used to address specific problems of Roma communities and to promote their social inclusion.
As part of its efforts to promote the use of EU funds, the European Commission launched – in 2009 - a series of events at high political level in Member States with significant Roma communities. These High Level Events (HLE) aim at raising awareness about the opportunities offered by EU funds, gaining commitments of stakeholders to use all existing (political) instruments, including the EU funds, reaching targets by established and specific milestones. More specifically, these events point out the imperative of speeding up the inclusion of Roma communities in all areas of life, including housing, education, employment, health, among others, drawing attention to the important human, social and also economic consequences of the exclusion of Roma.
Building upon events in Hungary (2009) and in Romania (2010), the European Commission will organise the next HLE in Slovakia in May 2011. The overall objective is to mobilise the increased use of EU funds and improve the impact of projects supported by them so as to significantly progress the social inclusion of the marginalised Roma communities as well as to share experiences on what has worked well and what can be improved in the field of Roma Inclusion.