Advocating for Roma Rights in the Face of the Coronavirus Crisis
Seville, 8 May 2020. CESPYD, together with a group of Roma women, leaders of community organizations, researchers and journalists are concerned about the consequences that the crisis of the coronavirus is having on the neighbors who live in the most unjust conditions during the confinement period in Seville (Spain).
In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have developed a working model following the recommendations of International organizations, such as the European Public Health Association and the European Public Health Alliance, which have called for measures to protect the most vulnerable populations from the consequences of this pandemic. These measures must recognize and address the needs of the most disadvantaged groups in order to mitigate the impact of the crisis and prevent the growth of public health inequalities.
The Roma population is an ethnic minority that is vulnerable to the health crisis due to the systematic violation of their rights in the areas of education, health, employment and housing. In Seville, many Roma settlements and neighborhoods do not have adequate access to water or electricity. The fundamental objective of this work is to advocate for Roma rights as Spanish and European citizens. This includes accessing essential living conditions to be able to carry out quarantine with dignity, safety and health.
In order to achieve this we have carried out various actions and initiatives described below:
First letter to the mayor – A letter was sent to the mayor expressing our concern about the situation of the people living in shanty towns in Seville and we asked him to know the specific actions planned to address this situation. This was done together with a total of 33 organizations, 4 research groups and 3 individuals who signed the letter.
Press release – A massive press release is sent to the media. Journalists and general media are contacted through Twitter and generic email accounts. The information is published on the CESPYD website with photos and the letter to the mayor attached to the news. The link is shared in the profiles of social networks.
The media echoes this information:
GoFundMe – The creation of a crowdfunding campaign on the GoFundMe website:
Joint statement with EPHA – A joint statement is made with the EPHA (European Public Health Alliance). A second press release is written and sent to the media. We share this information on our social networks.
Roma neighbors’ testimonies – A group of Roma women collect testimonies from their neighbors through Whatsapp voice messages and phone calls. The interviews are transcribed, and a narrative analysis is carried out, identifying common categories and needs.
Campaign design – A marketing agency is hired for the creation and design of the graphic identity of our movement.
Second letter to the mayor – We provide technical support for the women from Polígono Sur and Torreblanca to send a letter to the mayor requesting an online meeting.
Video #SaveRomaFromCorona – A video is created in order to make visible the difficulties Roma women are going through.
Change petition – The information is published on the Change platform and disseminated in networks and among allies.
Social media campaign – We are planning a social media advertising campaign with the movement’s new brand using the Instagram, Facebook and the CESPYD website.
Meeting with the mayor of Seville – On Wednesday, May 6, the meeting between the Mayor, spokespersons for CESPYD and the women of Torreblanca and Polígono Sur is held through the Zoom platform.
If you wish to collaborate with the initiative or receive more information, you can contact us through: [email protected]