Swedish State to Pay Historic Damages to the Roma Community
Today, the Chancellor of Justice announced that the Swedish state will not appeal the decision by the Svea Court of Appeal regarding the case of the police’s registration of Swedish Roma citizens. Damages will be paid to all persons included in the illegal registry.
Civil Rights Defenders, which represented eleven of a total of about 4 700 people included in the registry, won the court case against the Swedish state in the Svea Court of Appeal on April 28, 2017. The state was found guilty of ethnic registration and discrimination, and ordered to pay 30 000 SEK in damages to each of the eleven Roma plaintiffs.
In the light of the court decision, the Chancellor of Justice has concluded that all individuals included in the police registry were registered because they are members of the Roma community, or closely related to the community, which means they are entitled to the same damages as the eleven persons covered by the court case. The total amount of damages to be awarded is the largest amount ever paid by the Swedish state for an individual event.
“We are very pleased that the court process has resulted in redress and compensation for all of the people included in the ethnic registry. They have been subjected to a serious violation and, even if it is late, it is positive that the state is finally taking responsibility for what happened”, said Robert Hårdh, Executive Director of Civil Rights Defenders.
“The decision not to appeal lays the foundation for the important work of rebuilding trust between the Roma community and the police – trust that, due to historical abuses of the community, was already low even before the existence of the registry was revealed in 2013,” said Robert Hårdh.
Read the decisions by Stockholm District Court and Svea Court of Appeal (only available in Swedish).
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Civil Rights Defenders jobbar för att alla ska få upprättelse för etnisk diskriminering och registrering, vi betalar inte ut skadestånd.
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