The Council of Mayors of Greater Bordeaux is currently debating on how to handle Roma communities in their territory
A member of the City Council of Greater Bordeaux submitted an oral question during the last official meeting on the fact that the presence of Roma gypsy communities on a specific site they were said to have ‘invaded’ was raising health and safety issues. The Mayor of the local town of Haillan-Andréa Kiss- replied that those communities were not gypsies but Bulgarians and as such full European citizens who had the misfortune to be expelled from Mérignac-another town which is part of the Greater Bordeaux territory.
Therefore, the Mayor of Haillan demanded the Greater Bordeaux officials to recruit facilitators and to purchase waste containers for those nearly 80 people who are currently living in caravans. He also asked those same officials to provide them with water and electricity since those Roma families are willing to pay for what they will use.
The position of Andréa Kiss is in line with the whole integration strategy he started to implement in his own town in welcoming two Roma families whose children are attending local schools. Thus, they are supporting their integration offering them literacy courses, job guidance and exchanges with the other inhabitants.
Regarding the issue of Roma communities from Bulgaria who have been living in Greater Bordeaux for 7 years now, they have been going through ongoing relocations forced upon them by local authorities. Consequently, the City Council members recognize the urgency of a sustainable solution for the integration of those communities. The Mayor of Bordeaux-Alain Juppé-suggested the creation of a new organization that would handle and manage the integration of those communities in the different towns of the Greater Bordeaux area.
The Mayor’s Council is meeting today on December 17,2015 in order to discuss all options regarding the integration of those Roma communities. The results of these political debates should be communicated soon.