Europe “seems to be forgetting” to integrate its nine million Roma, Fidesz MEP Lívia Járóka told the Friday edition of daily Magyar Hírlap.
Járóka, who last month became the first Roma to be appointed vice president of the European Parliament, said she believed that speeding up the social inclusion of Europe’s Roma community could help solve the continent’s labour-shortage woes. The German government, for instance, is advocating for the admission of migrants for the exact same reason, she added.
“Right now we’re looking at a missed opportunity,” in terms of Roma social integration, Járóka told the paper.
Their inclusion would also require the right education and training programmes, and the community’s health standards must also be improved, she added.
On the topic of the Roma integration strategy Hungary had put together during its European Union presidency in 2011, Járóka said that although it could be implemented by Hungary, other member states “may be less keen or successful”. The EP vice president said she is currently working on correcting several areas of the strategy in time for the EU’s 2020-2027 funding period.