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Western European Regional Workshop

police and Roma
PRIMER project
TRAILER project

Police and Roma: Towards Safety for Multi-Ethnic Communities (2004-present)

Programme summary

The programme has three main strands

  • Creation of a good practice model (in partnership with the government of Romania) for undertaking a systematic assessment of current policing policy and practice relating to Roma, with reference to international standards.
  • Production of a resource manual to identify standards of good practice and practical examples
  • A series of workshops held in a number of countries across Europe. These workshops will bring together members of the Roma community, ethnic minority NGOs, police and relevant representatives of national and international institutions to identify the key problems and needs, and to offer potential solutions to these issues.
Programme team 

The programme is being coordinated by the UK-based NGO European Dialogue on behalf of the Contact Point for Roma and Sinti Issues (CPRSI) at the ODIHR/OSCE. European Dialogue is working in partnership with the CPRSI, the OSCE Strategic Police Matters Unit, Governments of participating OSCE states, ethnic minority NGOs and other relevant bodies to implement the programme activities.

Policing and Roma: resource manual – a compilation of documents to support the implementation of the OSCE Action for Roma and Sinti

This resource manual contains key documents in the field of policing and Roma to support the implementation of the OSCE Action Plan for Roma and Sinti. Outlines the OSCE Action Plan for Roma and Sinti: Recommendations on Policing and the OSCE programme of activities on Roma and Sinti. Covers such areas as human rights and the police; codes of practice for the police; police training; partnership building; European case-law on Roma and policing; and practical measures for improving relations between police and minorities.
Download the resource manual


In order to improve access to criminal justice for Roma communities in Romania, an assessment of policing practices in relation to international standards has been undertaken by the Romanian Ministry of Administration and Interior, in consultation with the Roma Community.

The assessment programme has been organised by the Institute of Research and Crime Prevention (ICPC) in partnership with the Romanian Roma NGO Romani Criss, with the assistance of experts working with European Dialogue. 

The systematic assessment focuses on the existing progress and problems in relations between Roma and the Police in Romania, as identified by both police and the Roma community. Following two preparatory workshops, training for the assessors by international experts took place in November 2005, with a support visit in March 2006.

Download The systematic assessment of policing policy and practice relating to Roma: guidance for use in OSCE participating states which sets out a recommended methodology for OSCE participating states to undertake a systematic self-assessment of their policing policy and practice relating to Roma and Sinti communities, in order to assist implementation of Recommendation 30 of the OSCE Action Plan on Roma and Sinti Issues.

A workshop on ethnic minority and police relations with a particular emphasis on relations between police and Roma was held in October 2005. Organised by the Federal National Cultural Autonomy of Russian Gypsies, Romano Kher (FNKA), in association with the NGO Roma Ural, the three-day workshop was held just outside Moscow.

The workshop brought together representatives from Roma and other ethnic minority NGOs, members of the police and prosecution service, the Federal Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry for Regional Development and a number of international experts in the field of policing and ethnic minorities. 

The aim was to identify the key issues that currently affect ethnic minority communities and especially Roma, in relation to policing and criminal justice, to exchange national and international experience of good practice in this field and to identify further steps to be taken to resolve these issues. 

The workshop was co-funded and co-ordinated by European Dialogue through its Ethnic Minorities and Access to Justice in the Russian Federation project which provided expertise and experience.  
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An international seminar was held in Poland earlier in 2005, the aim of which was to compile information on a number of initiatives that have been carried out in Poland to improve Roma /Police relations. The workshop brought together a wide range of representatives from police, criminal justice and governmental organisations from across Poland, as well as Roma and other relevant NGOs.  Read more

The Balkans 
A workshop was held in June 2006 to identify policing issues and current practices relating to Roma in the region covered by the OSCE policing missions in the Balkans. The workshop was organised by the Police Development Department of the OSCE Mission in Skopje, Macedonia, in association with the Ministry of Interior of FYROM. 
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Western Europe 
A workshop was held in Derbyshire, UK in November 2006 bringing together representatives of Gypsy and Traveller communities, police and local government from the UK and other Western European countries to discuss key issues affecting Roma-Police relations.
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