A project advising Hungarian law enforcement agencies on handling hate crimes and promoting Roma in law enforcement was launched on Wednesday with help of the Norwegian Civil Fund.
“If perpetrators of hate crime are not brought to justice, democracy is harmed and an entire society suffers the consequences,” the Norwegian ambassador said at the launching event.
Tove Skarstein noted that hate crime contravenes the EU charter on fundamental rights to the same extent that discrimination is against EU basic rules.
The aim is to prepare police commanders for handling an abrupt outbreak of an ethnic conflict or acts of provocation, as well as to communicate a positive image of Roma people finding employment in law enforcement, she said.
The project highlights how hate crimes undermine democracy while seeking to strengthen tolerance in the society, she said. It also includes promoting the drafting of relevant police protocols, she added.
The projects operated by the Public Association for European Roma Law Enforcement (ERRBKE) serves as an excellent model of how a civil organisation and the police can cooperate in tackling a social issue of paramount importance, she said.
The Norway Civil Fund has provided 60,000 euros for funding the project. Gyorgy Makula, the head of the ERRBKE, said at the event that part of the Roma law enforcement campaign showcases Roma who perform outstandingly as police officers and fire fighters.