Motion passed by Royal Holloway SU on anti-Roma and traveller racism

The general meeting of Royal Holloway University of London’s student union passed this motion (proposed by NCAFC supporters) unanimously on 5 February. Please adapt it to put to your student union.

For the Traveller Solidarity Network, see here.

If you would like to work with the NCAFC on these issues, get in touch by emailing Daniel Cooper [email protected]

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SURHUL deplores the continuing racism and disadvantage experienced by Roma and Traveller communities in the UK.

SURHUL notes:
1. That discrimination and harassment of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities is considered a safe form of racism in the UK
2. That there are an estimated 300,000 Traveller, Gypsy and Roma people in Britain
3. That Gypsies, Roma and Travellers are amongst the most marginalised minorities in the UK
4. The violent eviction of 83 families from Dale Farm, a former scrapyard owned by Travellers and home to almost 1000 people for more than 30 years.
5. That Basildon Council spent £7 million making 83 Traveller families homeless.
6. That more than 90% of Travellers planning applications are initially rejected by local government authorities, compared to the 20% national average [Source: Commission for Racial Equality].
7. That Basildon council recently voted to take ‘direct action’ against Traveller families living at the side of the road following eviction last year from Dale Farm

SURHUL believes:
1. That SURHUL stands opposed to all forms of racism, both direct and institutionalised
2. That the continuing racism and disadvantage experienced by Roma and Traveller communities in the UK is unacceptable and must end
3. That the eviction of Traveller sites is a form of ethnic cleansing which results in Travellers being forced onto the road against their will and Traveller children being pulled out of education
4. That the government cuts are hitting the most disadvantaged groups hardest, who are now paying a high price for an economic crisis they have not caused
5. That the rise of self-organised campaigning Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities is to be welcomed, as is the development of support organisations such as Traveller Solidarity Network
6. That support for these organisations is wholly consistent with SURHUL’s vision of a society based on justice and equality.

SURHUL resolves:
1. To actively support Gypsy, Roma and Traveller rights.
2. To advertise the Traveller Solidarity Network to member’s official publications and communications, and to urge our members support
3. To take up the campaign against anti-traveller racism as part of SURHUL’s general anti-racism work and to encourage and support students involved in campaigning on these issues.

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