News

January 8, 2019

Council of Europe Issued Recommendations to Lithuania Concerning Protection of Minorities

The Advisory Committee on the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities under the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe called on the Lithuanian authorities to adopt the legislative framework to prevent discrimination against students from minority language schools, and to overcome negative stereotypes concerning Roma, European Pravda reports with reference to the information provided by the press service of the Council of Europe. 

The Council of Europe’s Committee noted that the absence of a comprehensive legislative framework continues to impede the observance of important language rights, like the spelling of names in official documents and the use of minority languages on topographic indications. The Council of Europe’s Committee noted that the introduction of a unified Lithuanian language curriculum and state exam in 2012 caused significant problems for students from minority language schools, in particular, Polish minority language schools. 

In the conclusions, the Committee called on the Lithuanian authorities to adopt, in close consultation with minority representatives, a comprehensive legal framework to protect the rights of national minorities. 

Lithuania is recommended to take measures in order to raise awareness and remove negative stereotypes concerning Roma, in particular, by way of training teachers, police officials and local state administrations. 

Lithuania is called on to bring the legislation on the use of minority languages in dealings with administrative authorities, in private signs and topographical indications, and pertaining to the spelling of surnames and first names in official documents in accordance with the Framework Convention. 

Lithuania shall ensure that the education reform causes no discrimination against students from minority language schools, and shall involve minority language teachers in a strong advisory role. 

The Lithuanian authorities are also called on to adopt a conceptual approach towards bi- and multilingual teaching in schools and pre-schools and to support the exposure of children from national minorities to a Lithuanian-language environment and vice versa.