The Czech Republic’s representative on the European Commission, Věra Jourová, has presented proposals for a 40-percent quota for women on company boards. Under the ANO politician’s plan, firms whose non-executive directors are more than 60 percent male would have to prioritise women when candidates of equal merit were being considered. Ms. Jourová told The Guardian newspaper ahead of Monday’s announcement that women made up 65 percent of university graduates in Europe so it made sense to draw on that talent and investment. Previous EU efforts to introduce such a quota scheme were blocked by a number of states.
At least two supporters of the far-right Workers Party for Social Justice,
ended up in handcuffs in Prague on Friday afternoon after verbally and
physically assaulting the police after they were prevented from continuing
in their march towards the Old Town Square. Specially-trained anti-conflict
police were on hand to defuse the situation, as several demonstrators
demanded they be allowed through on Hybernská street.
Some shouted they should be allowed to continue "in a democracy". Novinky.cz carried live video of the march, which showed several protestors purposely blocking traffic after being told to turn back.
Monday marks 10 years since a landmark discrimination ruling was handed to
the Czech Republic by the European Court of Human Rights. The court ruled
that the Czech Republic had violated the European Convention of Human
Rights by segregating Roma children into schools for the mentally disabled.
Eighteen Roma children were discriminated against and their rights to
education trampled on.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner, the OSCE and other organisations have called on states to increase their efforts to integrate Roma children at regular state schools.
Police are investigating an incident of hate speech on social networks and in the media after a class photo of first-graders in a school in Teplice, which appeared in a regional daily, sparked threats and racist comments. The school has been given heightened police protection, but the children’s parents say they still fear for their offspring’s safety.
The deputy governor of the region of Ústí and the head of the local
branch of the Communist Party in Chomutov Jaroslav Komínek has made racist
comments on facebook insulting Egyptians after a return from a vacation in
Egypt in which the local politician said he and friends had been forced to
pay an extra 160 euros or so for their flight from Marsa Alam.
Writing online, the politician described Egyptians as “monkeys descended from Neanderthals” and called them an “embarrassment to civilization”, the Czech News Agency reported after the racist comments were uncovered on Sunday by Hlidacipes.org.
Ústí governor Oldřich Bubeníček, also of the Communist Party, said the comments were his deputy’s private matter; ČTK was not able to get a hold of Mr Komínek for comment. The words in question have since been deleted.
More than 80 Roma students, at high schools and vocational schools,
officially received stipends on Friday from the NGO Romea. Recipients are
students whose study is threatened by poor domestic or financial
The stipend system covering the high school and vocational schools is in its second year and was founded by the NGO after repeated requests from parents in the Roma community. Stipends for high school students are 14,000 crowns per year and 21,000 for vocational school students.
The NGO already ran a program helping students at the university level.
Female university graduates in the Czech Republic earn an average 29
percent less than their male graduate colleagues, according to a study
commissioned by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs. Women who have
completed third-level education are paid an average CZK 15,000 less than
their male counterparts.
The Czech Republic has the second highest gap between pay levels for male and female graduates in the European Union. The average gap across the bloc is 22 percent.
Police in Chomutov, north Bohemia on Friday evening arrested the head of the Coalition for the Republic–Republican Party of Czechoslovakia, Miroslav Sládek, for continuing to campaign after the general elections had begun. A spokesperson for the force said the politician was facing misdemeanour charges. Mr. Sládek came to national attention in the 1990s when he was known for his attacks on the Roma minority while his Republicans were in Parliament. He disbanded the party in 2001 but reformed it last year. Pollsters gave the grouping no chance of entering the lower house at present.
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