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VIDEO: #TalkReal in Cluj-Napoca: Combating environmental racism in Eastern Europe

This video and accompanying abstract is part of our ongoing collaboration with Talk Real. In this episode, held in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, Talk Real discusses the implications of environmental degradation for the local Roma community, and the intersection of systemic racism with environmental neglect. In its post published on October 4, Talk Real writes:

Pata Rât is located at the periphery of the city of Cluj Napoca, and serves as the space for living of three distinct groups of Roma people. In Pata Rât there is no electricity, drinking water nor sanitary conditions.

While authorities maintain that people came voluntarily to the community, local activists of Cluj explain that members of Roma people were forced to move there. The number of people change seasonally, coming from Transylvanian villages for seasonal work, and traditional Roma families who live a semi-nomadic life.

Last week we attended the III Activist Fora organised by Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Cluj-Napoca. There, we discussed with some of the activists from the region the concept of environmental racism, a new term that names a reality that has existed for centuries. It refers to the experience of certain groups of people that are exposed to a greater environmental risk due to discrimination.

The discussion features Enikö Vincze (activist and anthropologist), Anita Lushi (political activist), Jana Tsoneva (PhD in Sociology), Claudiu Crāciun (political scientist), and host Niccolò Milanese (European Alternatives).