Traveller Movement national annual conference approaches
Waiting, waiting waiting…Is the wait finally over? Join us on November 21st to draft the new national strategy to eliminate Gypsy, Roma and Traveller inequalities.
It’s that time of year again when we at the Traveller Movement start gearing up for our annual conference. Each year we bring together community members and activists with members of parliament and the civil service to discuss what is being done at various levels of Government to tackle inequalities in Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities.
TMs' annual national conference is now in its 12th year, and this year we are focusing on the new national strategy to address Gypsy, Roma and Traveller inequalities. We’ve invited Lord Younger, whose department is heading up the strategy, and other key civil servants to attend and talk directly with community members. This gives the opportunity for you to have a say on what you think should be included in the strategy.
So, what is the new national strategy?
On June 6th of this year, the Communities Minister announced a new national strategy to address Gypsy, Roma and Traveller inequalities. This comes off the back of the eighteen month inquiry by the Women and Equalities committee which examined the extent of the inequalities in the each of the communities. Unsurprisingly, the select committee found there had been a persistent failure by both national and local policy-makers to tackle these inequalities in any sustained way.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government will lead on the strategy, and will work across Government departments to improve outcomes in key areas including health, education, employment and data monitoring. Data monitoring is especially important, as there are major gaps for Gypsies, Roma and Travellers across public institutions. This means that public service providers, such as doctors, hospitals and clinical commissioning groups are not creating policy that is Gypsy or Traveller specific. This is not acceptable.
At the moment there is no further information, therefore we are using this year’s annual conference to kick-start these discussions. The Government has been given twelve months to respond, which gives us time to draft a strategy with the community. So come along and have your voice heard!
We will also be running our excellent, annual Christmas card competition. Each year we ask children from around the country to submit their artwork, and one will be selected to be the Traveller Movement Christmas card. You don’t want to miss it!
Bookings are now open, and there are a handful of free tickets for unwaged community members. Visit Traveller Movement website for more details: http://travellermovement.datawareonline.co.uk/Event-Registration/EventId/55
By the Traveller Movement
(All photographs (c) Mary Beard)