The national EQUIROM Team in Greece, in collaboration with the Programme Secretariat, delivered a two-day training session on 4-5 November 2023, in Athens. Opened by Ms Eleni Tsetsekou, the Head of the Council of Europe’s Roma and Travellers Team together with Mr Prodromos Pyrros, Secretary General of the General Secretariat on Social Solidarity and Fight Against Poverty, Ministry of Social Cohesion & Family Affairs (National Roma Contact Point) and aligned with the International Romani Language Day, the event brought together a diverse blend of journalists and media professionals at the Journalists' Union of Athens Daily Newspapers. The primary aim of this training initiative was to advocate for the fair, inclusive, and equitable portrayal of the Roma community within the Greek media landscape.
Interactive training sessions were led by experienced human rights experts, academics, and journalists: Marilena Katsimi, Theodoros Alexandridis and Georgios Tsiakalos. Representatives from the Roma community played a pivotal role in the pedagogical purposes of the training as participants delved into the rich historical presence and contribution of Roma in Greece and Europe, exploring their history and enduring experiences with antigypsyism. The session also provided a comprehensive understanding of CoE and EU standards on Roma inclusion and hate speech as well as insights from international and national institutions including FRA, ECRI, Roma Civil Monitor and the Greek Ombudsman.
The training highlighted the media's influence in shaping and perpetuating negative stereotypes against the Roma community, emphasising the pressing need for corrective measures. In this regard, the EQUIROM studies on the portrayal of Roma in the Greek media were presented and selected footage of TV shows were discussed. The significance of fact-checking was also addressed, providing examples illustrating how Roma are unfairly targeted and scapegoated.
Overall, the session urged for a positive harnessing of this influence for the benefit of the Roma community. This initiative represents a paradigm shift for responsible and equitable representation of the Roma community, highlighting transformative potential within collective efforts to strengthen media ethics and instigate positive societal change.
For further updates on the EQUIROM Programme and its initiatives, please stay tuned to our website.
An article about this training in the local news can be read at this link: