Racial harassment and hate speech in the Republic of Moldova continue to expand and become more accentuated in the electoral period. Even if the national legal framework bans racism, describing the actions or inaction motivated by racial, ethnic or religious hatred as hate crime liable to legal responsibility or as discrimination, there are no real convictions for prejudice-motivated acts of violence, said human rights expert Dumitru Russu, the author of a report produced by the Coalition for Inclusion and Nondiscrimination (CIN). According to him, there are considerable signs showing that the police fail to initiate and investigate hate crime, especially when complaints come from ethnic minorities, such as the Roma.
In a news conference at IPN, Dumitru Russu said the ethnic minorities, especially the Roma, need efficient social inclusion strategies. The education system is not adjusted to the cultural needs and does not have sufficient allocations from the budget for increasing the number of Roma children enrolled at school. The state instituted the service of community mediators who offer support to the ethnic minorities, but the number of these is lower than necessary owing to the low salary. The persons with mental and intellectual disabilities are most exposed to abuses and human rights violations. The bad treatment, use of physical and psychological violence, inhuman conditions in psychiatric hospitals and temporary placement centers for persons with disabilities are frequently reported by independent monitors.
Human rights expert Doina-Ioana Străsteanu said the successor’s pension is a social assistance measure aimed at helping persons in difficulty, but this does not achieve its goal. Under the law on the public pension system, the surviving spouse will get 50% of the pension if this meets two conditions: when the maintainer died or during five years after death, the person reached retirement or had a severe or accentuated disability degree, and lived for at least 15 years in marriage with the person who died and didn’t get married again.
Referring to the implementation of the European Social Charter’s provisions concerning the right to protection against poverty and social exclusion, the expert said the Roma women and girls are one of the most disfavored social groups in Moldova. Their vulnerability to social exclusion derives from a number of discriminatory factors, such as gender, social class, ethnicity, race and also from the practices existing in the community, based on traditions, culture and patriarchal attitudes.
CIN secretary Gheorghina Drumea said that after Moldova ratified the European Social Charter, it committed itself to respect its provisions and to implement it nationwide by amending the legal framework. The Coalition was founded a year ago and aims to further contribute to the observance, defense, promotion and better realization of the human rights in the country, to take an active part in the drafting, implementation and monitoring of the legal framework and policies to prevent and fight discrimination.