Associazione 21 luglio is a non-profit organization that supports groups and individuals in condition of extreme segregation and discrimination, protecting their rights and promoting children’s well-being. It was founded in 2010 and it is composed of Roma and non-Roma people.
The association adheres to the principles of non-profit-making, democratic structure and gratuitousness of the board. Board members are: Carlo Stasolla (Chairman); Michele Costa (Vice President), lawyer and co-funder; Tommaso Vitale, Associate Professor of Sociology at Université Sorbon Paris Centre d’études europeénes; Paola Cutaia, CEO of a non profit consulting firm and former Director of Amnesty International Italy. The Honorary President is Mauro Palma, national ombudsman for the rights of the detaine.
The association is registered at the National Office against racial discrimination Registry of associations and bodies carrying out activities aimed at combating discrimination. It is also member of: Associazione Carta di Roma, European Roma Information Office, CRC Group (Working Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child), Fundamental Rights Platform, International Step by Step Association, Romani Early Years Network, Italian Coalition for Civil Liberties and Rights and No Hate Speech Movement.
Associazione 21 luglio’s work deals mainly with:
HUMAN RIGHTS MONITORING AND RESEARCH
Associazione 21 luglio regularly publishes reports investigating the living conditions of Roma communities in Italy, based on data and information collected through fieldwork. The reports analyse, in particular, the following topics: housing, health, education and legal status.
Monitoring activities, implemented especially in the city of Rome, allow Associazione 21 luglio to come in direct contact with segregated communities and sounding their needs in order to develop effective advocacy actions targeting policy makers, institutional representatives and public opinion.
With its advocacy activities, Associazione 21 luglio seeks to influence policies that have a direct effect on the rights of segregated communities in Italy, focusing mainly on children’s rights. Moreover, the association intends to change policy measures galvanizing marginalization on an ethnic basis.
To achieve these objectives, Associazione 21 luglio presents reports to institutions and policy makers; organizes visits to the “camps” with Italian and EU MPs; draws up recommendations; publishes letters and appeals; organizes awareness-raising activities and prepares reports for the United Nations and the Council of Europe.
When it is necessary, it also intervenes in situations of human rights violations or incitement to hatred and racial discrimination by taking legal actions, often supported by public awareness-raising campaigns.
HATE SPEECH MONITORING
Osservatorio 21 luglio is a project of Associazione 21 luglio aiming at protecting minorities, especially Roma communities, against discriminatory and hatred inciting speeches and practices, through the constant monitoring of 120 selected sources on newspapers, blogs and websites. Particular attention is paid to statements, interviews and speeches of political and institutional representatives strengthening prejudices and negative stereotypes of those communities. For every identified hate speech case, Osservatorio 21 luglio performs a case-by-case study and proceeds, if necessary, to send a formal letter of warning to the interested subjects and to forward the complaint to the responsible authorities.
Associazione 21 Luglio promotes the welfare of children and adolescents through art-education projects aimed at minors who live in vulnerable conditions and affected by segregation, discrimination and distress.
To ensure their healthy development, the association develops, also, a series of awareness-raising and training activities addressed to professionals and para-professionals working in ECEC services. It also supports parental empowerment in a perspective of progressive independence and autonomy, enhancing competences and facilitating the access to health and educational services.
Finally, Associazione 21 Luglio leads the Romani Early Years Network in Italy, the first national network for the care and well-being of Roma early childhood.
At EU level, Associazione 21 luglio contributed, as partner, to the realization of the following projects:
The project, coordinated by Terre des Hommes regional office for Central and South East Europe, was financed by the EC Daphne Programme and, in a second phase, by Oak Foundation.
The project, led by SCI Italy and involving 8 EU countries (Netherlands, Germany, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria, Italy, Spain and Greece), was co-financed by the EACEA Programme Europe for Citizens.
The project, led by RROMA – Regional Roma Educational Youth Association (Macedonia) and involving 12 EU countries (Macedonia, Germany, Italy, Austria, Poland, Czech Republic, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Romania, Turkey and Croatia), was financed by the EC Erasmus Plus Programme.
The project, led by the Roma and non-Roma youth Association Amaro Foro Ev (Germany) and involving 5 EU countries (Macedonia, Turkey, Italy, Bulgaria and Germany), was financed by the EC Erasmus Plus Programme.
The project, led by the Roma and non-Roma youth Association Amaro Foro Ev (Germany) and involving 6 EU countries (Greece, Hungary, Italy, Macedonia, Romania, Turkey), was financed by the EC Erasmus Plus Programme.
Moreover, Associazione 21 luglio coordinated the Civil Society Monitoring of the National Roma Integration Strategy in Italy in 2012 and 2013, on behalf of the Decade of Roma Inclusion Secretariat Foundation. Please, download here the report.