No Gypsies Allowed: the Scandal against Romany

7. 9. 2005

Although racial discrimination is a crime in Austria, the owner of the tourist campsite in Tassenbach posted a sign last August reading "No Gypsies Allowed". This sign was intended to inform his customers that Roma people are not welcomed at his campsite.

Camp owner Johann Weiser justified his actions by explaining that if he accepts Roma in his campsite, his camp will be rated poorly by camping guidebooks. Mr. Weiser alleged that the guidebooks Duch Publishing House and German Club for Motorists have previously degraded his camp for accepting campers who are in fact not campers at all.

Mr. Weiser has recently removed the sign from his camp and is in danger of receiving a penalty for racial discrimination. The Zara association for fighting racism was informed about the case at the beginning of this week.

The case in Tassenbach is the most recent in a series of similar instances of discrimination against Roma by accommodation providers throughout Europe.

Further evidence of racial discrimination against Roma in Europe is stated by Sweden's English Newspaper, The Local. An investigation by Swedish Radio's Ekot program has revealed that Roma people with Swedish citizenship face discrimination at the country's campsites. Of 20 campsites called by Ekot, 10 said they did not allow Roma guests.

The program called a couple of campsites to establish whether or not there were places free. Ten minutes later, the producers sent a Roma family to the site. In both cases they were refused entry.

Sweden's Ombudsman against Ethnic Discrimination, known as (DO), has already identified people of Roma origins as common targets of discrimination in Swedish society. Indeed, DO is already investigating five cases where Roma Swedes have reported campsites.

"It makes me sad and concerned," Keith Palmroth told The Local, himself of Roma origin, at the anti-discrimination office in Gothenburg. "Now you see the truth in black and white, that it is actually the case that Roma do not have a place in society on the same terms as everyone else." Keith Palmroth concisely states the contemporary condition of Roma throughout Europe.

(Dzeno Association, Trever Hagen)

And the same occurs regularly in Germany, France, Holland, etc. - in a number of countries that pride themselves to be non-discriminating. So they may be when it comes to coloreds and such but NOT when it comes to "dirty Gyppos".