Travellers discriminated against parliamentary enquiry finds

Social work, education, health and other public services are
discriminating against travellers according to an inquiry by the
equal opportunities committee of the Scottish parliament.

The inquiry represents the first attempt to detail the issues
facing travellers in Scotland, and was written after consultations
with travellers and key support agencies. The committee recognises
the distinct ethnic identity of travellers, and recommends its
urgent inclusion in all anti-racist strategies. The main concerns
are the chronic discrimination against travellers by public
services, and the pressing need for additional resources and clear
strategies to meet the needs of young travellers in particular.

One young traveller, Clementine McDonald, welcomed the report
and said: “It’s now up to councils and other people to listen
to what we are saying. When I’m older I don’t want my
kids to go through what I did as a child.”

Alison Davies, director of Save the Children, said: “We have
consistently highlighted the denial of rights experienced by young
gypsy travellers, despite the fact that these are set out in the UN
Convention on the Rights of the Child. If you come from a minority
group, you have the right to enjoy your own culture and follow your
own way of life.”


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