HL Deb 07 June 2004 vol 662 cc6-7WA
Lord Avebury

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is their response to the alleged remarks of the head of the European Union delegation to Slovakia made on the day of Slovakia's accession that compulsory separation of Roma children from their parents should be practised, so that they would fit better into the dominant society. [HL3000]

Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean

Her Majesty's Government of course do not condone the compulsory separation of children from their parents for educational reasons. However, I welcome the continued debate on how to improve the educational possibilities for Roma children, who live in some of the most marginalised communities in Europe.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office continues to support projects across Europe through its Global Opportunities Fund, in co-operation with both governments and NGOs, including initiatives which promote social inclusion and education for children from minority groups such as Roma.