Commons Select Committee | April 2019 | Gypsy Roma and Traveller communities ‘comprehensively failed’ by policy makers
A major new report by the Women and Equalities Committee reports in its findings that there has been a persistent failure by national and local policy makers to tackle long standing inequalities facing Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities in any sustained way. The report entitled Tackling inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities explores inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, umbrella terms describing diverse minority groups whose members experience very stark inequalities.
These are some of the worst inequalities that the inquiry heard about:
- Pupils from Gypsy or Roma backgrounds and those from a Traveller or Irish Heritage background had the lowest attainment of all ethnic groups throughout their school years (Govt Race Disparity Audit).
- Fourteen per cent of Gypsies and Travellers describe their health as “bad” or “very bad” – more than twice as high as white British people (2011 Census);
- The health status of Gypsies and Travellers is much poorer than that of the general population, even when controlling for other factors such as variable socio-economic status and/or ethnicity;
- Life expectancy is 10-12 years less than that of the non-Traveller population;
- 42% of English Gypsies are affected by a long term condition, compared with 18% of the general population;
- One in five Gypsy Traveller mothers will experience the loss of a child, compared with one in a hundred in the non- Traveller community (evidence submission from University of Bedfordshire)
Discrimination and hate crime
- A survey carried out by Traveller Movement found that 90% of respondents had experienced discrimination and 77% had experienced hate speech or a hate crime
Tackling inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities highlights how Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people have the worst outcomes of any ethnic group across a huge range of areas, including education, health, employment, criminal justice and hate crime. The report of this two year inquiry makes 49 recommendations for change (Source: Commons Select Committee).
See also: Commons Select Committee News release