ECRI REPORT ON BULGARIA (fourth monitoring cycle)(fourth monitoring cycle)
The ECRI report of the fourth monitoring cycle examines the progress that has been made in a number of fields covered by the report of the previous cycle. One of Bulgaria’s main achievements was the adoption of the Protection against Discrimination Act, which came into force in 2004. The Centre for the School Integration of Children and Teenagers from Ethnic Minorities has been set up within the Ministry of Education to combat the school segregation of Roma children. In 2005, Bulgaria joined the programme of the Decade of Roma Inclusion 2005-2015, and programmes were drawn up in that context in the education, employment, housing and health fields to solve the problems faced by that group. Roma mediators have been recruited in the fields of employment and health. Since the third report, ECRI notes that there has been progress with the integration of Turks into political life. The adoption of a Legal Aid Act and the establishment of the National Legal Aid Office constitute progress that deserves noting in terms of access to justice, particularly for ethnic minorities.
With regard to the measures taken to integrate Roma in the areas of education, employment, health and housing, ECRI recommends that the Bulgarian authorities take the initiative more often in cooperation with NGOs active in the field and ensure that sufficient resources are provided to implement these measures.