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Local engagement for Roma inclusion: Locality study Helsinki (Finland), 2016
Södertörn University, School of Culture and Education, Education. Södertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7169-7472
2017 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

During the last decade, Roma from Eastern Europe have moved to other countries of the European Union as a response to the complex forms of exclusion and poverty they face in their countries of origin. Such movement also became visible in Finland from 2004, and sparked considerable public discussion. The majority of the Roma EU migrants face challenges in accessing the right to residency in Finland, which also affects the fulfilment of their key civil, political, economic and social rights.

The present report provides an overview of the participatory action research, Local Engagement for Roma Inclusion (LERI), which was implemented in Helsinki from November 2015 to 31 October 2016. The research worked with Roma EU citizens’ communities, most of whom lacked the right to residency in Helsinki. The aim was to generate knowledge and practices about their everyday experiences of exclusions and inclusion as regarding various areas of life. The project engaged Roma communities and local stakeholders in planning, implementing and evaluating community interventions. Sets of local interventions were implemented in the areas of generating income and employment, women’s participation and mobilisation, anti-Gypsyism, and community action. Data on the human rights situation of the Roma migrants and their experiences of exclusion was collected through participatory observation, participatory photography, focus groups and interviews.

The key exclusions that Roma EU mobile citizens emphasised during the research included: the scarcity of income-generating activities and the challenges in accessing the labour market in Finland, in the home countries and generally in Europe; the lack of housing in Finland versus the difficulties registering one’s house in the country of origin; harassment in public spaces; and ethnic profiling.

Participatory research and participatory community interventions can provide tools for the engagement of the Roma in the process of community and local actions – engagement that is tremendous for sustainable change. For LERI Helsinki, the flexibility of the research structure and the LERI’s culture of ‘learning by doing’ were central to realising successful interventions. The solid knowledge on the local social, economic and political context also positively affected the project’s implementation. On the other hand, the research identified that, in order to engage the communities in genuine participatory processes at all stages of project implementation, it required a resolute and sustained effort to train and strengthen the local capacity of the communities.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Vienna: European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights , 2017. , p. 27
Keyword [en]
Roma EU citizens, anti-Gypsyism, income generation, photovoice, housing
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:sh:diva-34403OAI: oai:DiVA.org:sh-34403DiVA: diva2:1178103
Available from: 2018-01-28 Created: 2018-01-28 Last updated: 2018-01-29Bibliographically approved

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Granqvist, Kimmo

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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
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  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • asciidoc
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