What is behind us

We have been intensively focusing on the topic of the Romani LGBTQ+ minority and multiple discrimination since 2014, when we organized the first ever official meeting of Romani people, not just gays and lesbians, in the Czech Republic. The event was held virtually in secret for security reasons and the outcomes were anonymous. However, information about the conference spread

quickly and the event received a great response. In the following years we took our activities on the topic of the queer Roma community to an international level and organized two conferences. At these conferences, the European Roma LGBTQ+ Platform was established, with the long-term goal of promoting the rights of this minority at the community and political level.


The first ever organised meeting of Roma queer people took place in spring 2014. Its main goal was to try to verbalize their own - often tragic and unprocessed - life experiences, as well as to share positive stories and experiences. The meeting was attended by 20 young Romani men and women from all over the Czech Republic and included art workshops and seminars on human rights issues.

The workshop led to the formation of an informal but relatively stable group that participated in other ARA ART events throughout the year, such as joining the Roma float at Prague Pride 2014. Some of the group have become permanent collaborators/icas of ARA ART and faces of our LGBTQ+ activities.


The first International Roma LGBTQ+ Conference was attended by 28 Roma queer people from 12 countries. The conference was a three-day event, held from 13-15 August 2015, and culminated in the establishment of the International Roma LGBTQ+ Platform and the adoption of the so-called Prague Declaration, which contains 8 points articulating the fundamental issues and challenges of the Roma queer minority in Europe. The conference was accompanied by a unique performance of the Theatre of the Oppressed and a cultural programme at Prague Pride.


A year later, we followed up the work of the International Roma Queer Platform with another conference over several days. Representatives of important organisations that can influence changes in the rights of the Roma LGBTQ+ minority, such as the ERRC, OSF, EC and others, were also invited to the conference. The Platform has also grown to include several more members, and has planned its next meetings and agenda for members to work on in their own countries and organisations.


In 2017, we established a specialized counseling room for Roma queer people and also for their families or friends. It works both online (email, facebook, messenger) and on the ground. Our Roma queer consultant(s) have been available in four different regions and have provided more than 500 consultations and interventions. The online counselling service is still running. For more information, click here.

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