PROJECT implemented by the Republic of Srpska Ministry of the Interior Women Network - RS WPON

Prevention of Discrimination against Roma and Violation of Roma Children Rights

Although everyday experiences from cities across Bosnia and Herzegovina show that Roma children often appear as victims of various forms of asocial behavior, especially as victims of begging offences, the competent authorities do not have the necessary statistical and analytical data to indicate the extent to which this problem is widespread in BiH. Also, Roma children appear as victims of crimes such as instigation to begging, and trafficking for sexual exploitation and begging. This often leads to stigmatization of the entire Roma population in BiH by other citizens and even by representatives of the institutions. It is indisputable that this stigmatization is largely present with citizens, but police officers as well, due to lack of awareness and ignorance of the history, culture and customs of the Roma nation, as well as problems they face, which creates a widening gap with Roma population and does not yield positive results both in reducing begging and aforementioned criminal offences in which Roma appear as victims.

Sensitizing police officers, understanding and improving their work with the Roma community will undoubtedly reduce the percentage of the above-mentioned negative phenomena that directly affect members of the Roma minority, especially children. In addition, providing adequate information to citizens about Roma history, traditions, customs and problems they face will result in change of citizens’ attitudes in terms of supporting the police in combating offences where Roma often appear as victims.


About the project

The activities implemented under the project “Prevention of Discrimination against Roma and Violation of Roma Children Rights” are as they follow:

  • developing a brochure on “Prevention of Discrimination against Roma and Violation of Roma Children Rights” for police officers, Police Academy cadets and Faculty of Security Sciences students;
  • preparing entry and exit surveys for trainees, organizing and delivering a workshop for Faculty of Security Sciences students;
  • organizing and delivering a workshop for police officers of Organized and Serious Crime Directorate, Police Administrations of Doboj, Banja Luka and Gradiska, Brcko District Police, Tuzla Canton MoI, and Zenica Canton MoI;
  • organizing and running a street campaign in Doboj; organizing and delivering a workshop for Police Academy cadets; organizing and delivering a workshop for police officers of Police Administrations East Sarajevo, Foca and Trebinje, Brcko District Police, Bosnian Podrinje Canton MoI, Tuzla Canton MoI;
  • organizing and running a street campaign in Trebinje;
  • organizing and running a street campaign in East Sarajevo;
  • the analysis of entry and exit surveys – measuring the change of attitudes in trainees;
  • the analysis of evaluation questionnaires – assessing the trainers’ competencies and the education topics.

On 04/22/2019 the first education was held in Banja Luka for students of the Faculty of Security Sciences. It was attended by 21 student, 20 females and 1 male. The education lasted one working day and covered all specified topics including joint discussion between trainers and students.

On 05/27/2019 the Park Hotel in Doboj hosted education for police officers of Police Administrations Doboj, Banja Luka and Gradiska, as well as women police officers of Brcko District Police, Tuzla Canton MoI, and Zenica Canton MoI. The education was attended by 20 trainees, 13 male and 7 female.

On 05/28/2019 a street campaign was held in Doboj.

On 06/13/2019 an education for cadets of Police Academy was held in Hotel Palas in Banja Luka.

On 06/27/2019 the second training was delivered for police officers of Police Administrations East Sarajevo, Foca and Trebinje, as well as women police officers of Brcko District Police, Bosnian Podrinje Canton MoI, and Tuzla Canton MoI in Hotel Bord in Jahorina. The education was attended by 20 police officers, 6 male and 14 female.

On 06/30/2019 a street campaign was held for the citizens of Trebinje. The campaign was organized by the Network representatives and police officers of Trebinje Police Administration.

On 08/12/2019 a street campaign was held for the citizens of East Sarajevo, as the last project activity. The campaign was organized by the representatives of Network and East Sarajevo Police Administration. The campaign was previously announced by the Information Department of the RS Ministry of the Interior.


Target group

The target group of the project are police officers, RS MoI Police Academy cadets, Faculty of Security Sciences students, as well as citizens of East Sarajevo, Doboj and Trebinje.

Project impact

The start of the project entailed the establishment of partnership and cooperation with the NGO “Romani Cej”, which gave the opportunity to the Association representatives, as well as other involved in the project, to become more familiar with the program and work of the Roma organization and acquire new knowledge about the Roma community. Consequently, the partnership itself has led to a change in attitude and raising the level of sensitization of the Association members. The recording a joint video clip, organized by the management of the “Dialogue for the Future” project, contributed to the additional guidance and strengthening of the cooperation.

Students and academics – future police officers showed great interest in education topics, raised many questions and rated the presence of the Roma population in education as particularly important. Such activities and educations can have a significant impact on raising the awareness and changing negative attitudes and preconceptions about the Roma population, which is of special importance when it comes to future representatives of the social system who should act in cases of discrimination against the Roma population.

During the educations, police officers exchanged experiences with each other related to specific cases from practice trying to find the best possible solution so that they could act even better in the future. Highly significant is the impact of cooperation between the RS MoI representatives and representatives of other MoI from the Federation of BiH and Brcko District who had the opportunity to exchange experiences in dealing with this population.

Street campaigns, which exceeded the expectations of the campaign organizers, were particularly influential. The impact of the campaigns on the citizens is clearly indicated by the media interest and the fact that the activities of the project, especially the campaigns, were broadcasted on dozens of portals. From the gender perspective, the impact has been equally made to both women and men.

The representatives of organizations from other countries contacted the representative of the partner Association “Roma Girl – Romani Cej” and inquired about the dynamics and implementation process of this project, since this type of activities are being implemented for the first time in the wider region.

As a result of the project, the representatives of the Roma Girl Association – Romani Cej decided to devote more attention and work to preserving the Roma culture and traditions and to work more on cases of discrimination and prejudice against the Roma population.

Content