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‘Roma are freedom loving, easy going, and carefree nomads, wearing colourful clothes and lots of golden jewellery. They are passionate dancers, gifted artisans, and great musicians. Their women are beautiful and seductive like Georges Bizet’s Carmen or Esmeralda from the ‘Hunchback of Notre Dame’. They tell fortune and can curse you if you do not give them any money. They are poor and beg. They do nothing to improve their own situation and steal gooses and chickens. They prefer to live on welfare than to work. They have more children than they can feed and clothe.
One day they will probably “out-baby” the majority population. Girls get married at a very early age, the men beat their wives and exploit their children. At night they dance around camp fires and sometimes they steal babies in order to sell them. They do not have a religion, are dirty, and a burden to society. They do not want to integrate and marginalize themselves. They are most happy when they are away from non-Roma. They do not want to be citizens of the country they live in and whenever they migrate, they ruin the reputation of the country that they have come from. They like to live close to trash dumps and their houses are very dirty. They are afraid of water, allergic to soap, and do not know how to use a water toilet. They are a source of disease. They do not know how to read and write, and somehow are not interested in learning it or in going to school. They must be mentally deficient. Maybe they are not even human beings. They live in huge family groups and do not mind to share one room with ten people. They are greedy and never satisfied. They are lazy and not trust worthy. They are genetically predestined to become thieves and drug dealers. And anyway, the term ‘Roma’ is just an invention and they are actually called Gypsies or Tsigani.’
There are very many stereotypes about Roma. You have probably heard many of them yourself.
The Dosta! campaign is promoting below a tool for fighting against the most common stereotypes and prejudices towards Roma. As any other material produced for the Dosta! campaign, this tool is at your disposal for campaigning for Roma. PDF versions in the participating countries languages can be requested at email@example.com
This document is to be considered as a non-exhaustive picture of the most common stereotypes towards Roma but just as inputs for starting contributing, through the Media, the NGO, the citizens and the governments, to the fight against prejudices and stereotypes towards Roma.
Read here to learn more about the most common misconceptions about Roma.