Episode 1, Series 2:  Roma Rights with Fil Sys

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We are kick starting Series Two of the EarthRights podcast in conversation with Fil Sys, trainee lawyer and Roma rights campaigner.

“There is a creeping injustice across Europe that is just not talked about. Roma people are the largest minority in Europe yet these people are subject to some of the most medieval racism, segregation and prejudice in Europe.”

As a Roma man himself, Fil openly and honestly shares his first-hand experiences of racism and discrimination with EarthRights. This is an extremely powerful episode and we urge you to listen, learn and share widely to spread the message about the plight of Roma and how to begin unlearning racism towards them.

Fil explains the deep and convoluted history of Romani people, including their often overlooked persecution by the Nazis during the Second World War, and how this has led to their ostracization in central and eastern Europe today.

During the episode, we also talk about Fil’s research into the segregation of education for Roma children, which he advocates is the most important area of life that needs to be changed in order to the combat racism Roma people face. His work focuses on the infamous and still unresolved case of D.H. v the Czech Republic.

Discrimination against Roma is experienced in almost all sections of public and private life in the Czech Republic: schools, hospitals, transport, politics, housing and in the use of language.

Most importantly, Fil tells us how we can all be an ally to Roma people to help fight against the injustices they face. You will learn how to refer to Roma, the racist roots of other terminologies, how to identify when you are culturally appropriating the Romani way of life, and how… “to convert everyday acts of racism into niceness.”

Finally, please follow the celebrations on 8th April 2021 for International Roma Day and the 50th anniversary of the Roma Congress.