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Cordóba 8 April 2010: Soraya Post, Vice President of the European Roma and Travellers Forum and Vivane Reding, Vice-President of the European Commission had a meeting on 7 April 2010 before the Second EU Roma Summit. Political participation of the need for the Roma Strategy were discussed.

Vice president of the ERTF welcomed the Luxembourger politician on the occasion of the International Roma Day. The focus of their informal consultation was on political participation and the situation of Romani women. Soraya Post expressed her concern over the worrying trends concerning Romani representation in the elected bodies all around in Europe:  “Roma are disproportionately overrepresented among the poorest and the most disadvantaged in Europe whilst disproportionately underrepresented in the European institutions, as well as in the national elected bodies. There’s only one Romani MEP in the European Parliament and I’m wondering whether there is one single Roma staff member at the European Commission. We have to change this trend.” She said.

Both parties proposed to launch a constructive dialogue between the ERTF and the European Commission in order to find sustainable solution for the cross-cutting problems faced by the Roma in Europe. “We believe that significant changes can only be achieved in the field of Roma inclusion if Roma representations are consulted and involved in the elaboration, implementation as well as in the monitoring and evaluation processes.” Mrs. Post concluded