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Gypsy Travellers in Contemporary Scotland

The 2001 ‘Inquiry into Gypsy Travellers and Public Sector Policies’: Ten Years On.

This study focuses on Gypsy/Travellers in contemporary Scotland. Ten years on from the 2001 Scottish Equal Opportunities Committee’s “Inquiry into Gypsy/Travellers and Public Sector Policies”, Scotland’s Gypsy/Travellers community still faces numerous challenges. The 2001 Inquiry represented a milestone and a crucial step in Scottish politics in relation to Scotland’s Gypsy/Travellers: the need for a coordinated approach to address the challenges faced by Scotland’s oldest indigenous minority marked a political commitment to advance and build on support for gypsy Travellers. The year 2005 brought about a revision’ of the 2001 Inquiry and offered a review of its progress and provided further recommendations.

The EU has been increasingly positing more focus on nomadic and travelling communities and 2008 marks the first mobilization of EU institutions, Member States and International organizations to address the challenges, the exclusion and the discrimination faced by the Roma people in Europe. As a consequence of the 2008 first Roma Summit, a plethora a policies and legislative instruments have been implemented across the EU to address the grave situation of the Roma people. Although the EU’s focus rests on the Roma communities, the vigorous emphasis on tackling discrimination and exclusion of Europe’s nomadic minorities is unequivocal. This sends a strong message to all Member States to address the failures of the ways existing national policies and politics in supporting the diverse nomadic and travellers minorities.