ACERT would like to wish our members, friends and supporters a peaceful and prosperous new year.
We’d like to …. but it’s not easy to feel optimistic.
The re-election of a Tory government, on a manifesto which ignores the thoughtful recommendations of the Women and Equalities Sub-Committee and instead promise new laws to make lives of families living on the roadside more difficult, gives us no encouragement.
Brexit with its undertones of nationalism and xenophobia threatens Roma migrants in the UK and also fuels racism And intolerance which can impact on all of us. Austerity may be coming to an end, but the increase in inequalities and child poverty it created are likely to linger on.
Nevertheless, ACERT has plans for 2020 which we hope will make a difference. They centre around our networks conference to be held in Manchester in June.
We recognise that very few families and teachers of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children have anywhere to turn for advice and encouragement. Our aim is to build self-help networks for parents, teachers and students, with the conference being the opportunity to identify potential users, understand what are the challenges they face and to plan and design the networks with them.
We have applied for a small grant to enable us to part-fund the event and to pay for some initial development work. We are also writing an online parents guide (downloadable and printable, for those without online access) and we will continue to work with other organisations in any way we can to challenge discrimination and create opportunities for our young people.