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European Dialogue works with a number of consultants based in the UK to exchange experience with our partners in human rights, race equality, conflict resolution, community development and democratic institution building.

Makhan S. Bajwa Director of Greenwich Council for Racial Equality (GCRE) for the last twenty years, has been working at local level in close partnership with public authorities and ethnic minority communities to promote and monitor equal opportunities and equal access to justice for ethnic minorities living in the London Borough of Greenwich.

Through GCRE, Makhan led the campaign to develop the Greenwich Accord – a strategy for a multi-agency approach to policing that meets the needs of minority communities; this strategy subsequently formed the basis of the Metropolitan Police Service policy for investigating racially motivated crime.

In 1998, he participated in the trans-European project ‘NAPAP- NGOs and Police Against Prejudice’, and took part in developing innovative training solutions for the police to bridge the gap between the Police and Minority Communities. He also led the development of a community-based racial awareness training programme for Greenwich Police Officers, and managed the training for Community Contributors to participate in police training.

Makhan started working with European Dialogue in his role as consultant for the Roma Rights and Access to Justice in Europe (RrAJE) programme in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Tony Cross a former Chief Inspector with the Metropolitan Police Service with over thirty years experience working in London’s diverse multi-cultural areas. His roles have included that of Policy Adviser on Strategic Approaches to Crime Prevention at New Scotland Yard and that of Community Liaison, Partnership and Criminal Justice Manager. 

Notable achievements include his involvement in the UK strand of a pan-European policing project that directly led  to the design and development of a community-based model for police race relations training that was subsequently to become the preferred model for the Metropolitan Police Service; the development of a framework agreement (The Greenwich Accord) for policing minority communities; managing a race relations training programme for 1100 police and civil staff; and developing professional standards of service for the investigation of racial crime that were subsequently incorporated into national policy.

He has worked with European Dialogue on ‘Rights and Access to Justice’ programmes in the Czech Republic and Russia and is also involved in a UK Government-led programme focusing on ‘Community Policing and Community Safety’ in Kosovo.

William. B. Ekinu has over a period of ten years worked within the Refugee Community in Greenwich as a Community Development Worker in various projects covering housing, social services, and employment and training. He currently works as a Race Equality Officer with Greenwich Council for Racial Equality (GCRE) responsible for developing mechanisms to promote ethnic minority participation and representation in local authority and voluntary sector activities including liaison with the Police. He was the Chair of the local Council for Voluntary Services for two years.

William has been a Community Development Consultant for the Roma Rights and Access to Justice Programme in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, and is now part of the team of consultants for European Dialogue’s ethnic minority – police project in Russia.

Arthur Ivatts OBE senior consultant to the British Department for Education and Skills (DfES) and former HM Inspector for Roma/Gypsy and Traveller Education in the UK. Arthur is also the UK Government’s representative on the Council of Europe’s Roma education working group.  Extensive experience of working in Central and Eastern Europe to promote equality of education for Roma children.

Consultant for the RrAJE Programme working with Romani Baht Foundation in the Fakulteta District of Sofia to improve the delivery of education for Roma children. Consultant for European Dialogue’s PRIMER Roma Education Project working with the Roma community in Sofia and Lom.

During 2003/4 Arthur worked as the senior research officer for a European Union study on the situation of Roma which let to the EU publication, “The Situation of Roma in an Enlarged European Union”, Brussels, November 2004. In June 2003, he presented a paper on Roma Education to the UNESCO World Conference on Intercultural Education in Finland. Arthur also acts as a consultant to governments on the establishment of school inspection services.

Peter Mercer MBE lives with his family on the local authority Travellers Caravan site in Peterborough. He is the General Secretary of the East Anglian Gypsy Council and British representative on the International Romani Union presidium.

For twelve years Peter worked for Peterborough City Council as Traveller /Gypsy Liaison Officer. Peter worked with the Commission for Racial Equality in pressing for and obtaining a legal judgement declaring Roma/Gypsies as a racial minority.

For many years he has provided training for the British police on Gypsy/Traveller issues, and is still acting as a lay adviser to the Central Police Training and Development Agency (CENTREX). He was awarded the M.B.E. (Member of the British Empire) for his work in Traveller/Gypsy education over many years.

Peter has been involved in working with European Roma/Gypsies for over fifteen years. He shares his experience and expertise in the areas of community development, equal opportunities, Roma/Gypsy empowerment and Roma/Gypsy participation at all levels. Since the mid-1990s Peter started working with European Dialogue and was the Chair of the Roma Rights and Access to Justice in Europe Programme (RrAJE).

Dr Robin Oakley is a British sociologist who works as an independent consultant  specialising in assisting public authorities and NGOs to address issues of racism and ethnic relations.  He has been active in this field for more than thirty years, and has written widely on the subject.  In Britain, he has undertaken research, training and consultancy for a wide range of professional groups, voluntary organisations and public bodies, especially in the fields of policing and criminal justice, central and local government, and education. He is an Honorary Research Fellow at the Centre for Ethnic Minority Studies at Royal Holloway, University of London.

He has also worked at European level on a variety of projects on discrimination and minority issues, covering both Western and Central/Eastern Europe, and he has regularly acted as a consultant for the Council of Europe.  He is currently working with European Dialogue on several projects focused on the situation of Roma in Europe, including for the OSCE on relations between Roma and the police.

Rajinder Sohpal joined the European Dialogue team in 2001 to contribute his expertise in partnership work to promote racial equality and to tackle discrimination. A Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, Rajinder also brought to the team his human resources experience, in particular concerning training. He was the consultant for the RrAJE Programme in Lom, Bulgaria and provided specialist training support to other projects.

Rajinder has over twenty years of experience of championing race equality. Currently Director of the Reading Council for Racial Equality, he led the setting up of key local initiatives such as the Reading Racial Attacks Forum and the Reading Declaration. He has also established regional and national initiatives including the Thames Valley network of Race Equality Councils, and the National Association for Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority Councillors.

He was the UK coordinator in a trans-European project aimed at promoting community involvement in police training.  Rajinder served as an elected local Councillor for sixteen years (leaving in 2002). He is an Independent Assessor for the Home Office Police National Assessment Centre. He is a Non-Executive Director of the local hospital in Reading, and Great Western Enterprise (Business Link), and Director of Mary Moss Limited (training and consultancy service). Rajinder recently set up the Asian Business Consortium for South East England, and is one its Directors.

Chris Taylor former Chief Inspector of the London Metropolitan Police.  Managed the incorporation of the 1998 Human Rights Act into the British Police Service. Independent consultant on racial equality, human rights and social justice. Experienced working at the local level with local authorities and community based organisations.

He has worked internationally on ‘human rights and policing’ in Ukraine, Georgia, the Czech Republic, Russia, Romania and Turkey. Former interim Director of Devon Racial Equality Council (DREC), worked with DREC to develop and implement a pilot project in Devon as part of European Dialogue’s TRAILER Project, to improve access to education and promote inclusion for children of Romany Gypsies and Travellers of Irish Heritage in Devon, South West England. Consultant for European Dialogue's projects – Ethnic Minorities and Justice in the Russian Federation (EMAJ) and Police and Roma: Towards safety for multi-ethnic communities.

Nicky Torode has nine years experience of international human rights work, specialising in the rights of ethnic minorities, in particular Roma. She has worked for various NGOs including Amnesty International (UK), Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative and Minority Rights Group International.  She has been consultant and author of reports for the Council of Europe on Roma in Russia, and has been a contributor to human rights reports for a variety of NGOs including European Roma Rights Centre, Save the Children and has published on racism in the UK media in Transitions on Line.

She worked in Russia as NGO Development Advisor to the Roma NGO ‘Roma Ural’ from 2002-2003. She helped establish the organisation through capacity building, training and fundraising including the current European Dialogue manged project Ethnic Minorities and Access to Justice in the Russian Federation. She continues to be consultant to Roma Ural through this project.

She is founder of the London-based NGO ‘Communicating Cultures’ which works to promote cultural diversity in the arts and media. She is a PhD candidate in minority rights in the Russian Federation and has an MA in Human Rights.