Civil society monitoring report on implementation of the national Roma integration strategy in Cyprus. Identifying blind spots in Roma inclusion polic
- European Union Publications Office
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In spite of the small number of Roma or Gurbet people living in the Republic of Cyprus, their situation is as difficult as in several other European countries with large and deeply marginalised Roma populations. The Council of Europe estimates that the number of Roma living in the Republic of Cyprus (RoC) is about 1,250 or 0.11 per cent of the overall population (data from 2012); the National Roma Integration Strategy for Cyprus (NRIS) estimates that in the areas controlled by the RoC, there are 650-700 Cypriot Roma now living. The general government policy for the promotion of Cypriot Roma social inclusion follows a horizontal policy that targets all vulnerable groups within a broader policy and its social integration structures (e.g., general social inclusion policies and the National Reform Program). Since Cyprus is promoting the integration of Roma through mainstream policy measures in the context of existing structures, there are no separate monitoring mechanisms in place for members of this group. The topics analysed in this report focus on the challenges faced by Romani women, intermobility within Cyprus, and on the prevention of drug use among Roma. The reason why the authors selected these specific themes for the third monitoring report is because until now there have not been any reports or research related to the domestic migration and mobility of Cypriot Roma, or research about Roma women in Cyprus, or about the impact of the distribution and use of drugs in the Roma community in Cyprus. Topics such as education, housing, health and employment were mentioned and analysed in the previous Roma Civil Monitor reports. For this reason, it was important to examine and investigate the themes mentioned above. These topics provide a more complete picture of the situation of Cypriot Roma and other issues faced in their community. As emerged from the interviews conducted with Roma (10 Roma) and non-Roma (two non-Roma), the lack of concrete political or social Roma integration measures creates problems not only among Romani communities (for both men and women) but also problems for those around them.