No. 797-21


The opinion was passed in the procedure regarding the complaint of the Association AA against BB and the host VV, regarding the show “…”, which was broadcast on October 26, 2021. The complaint states that, during the show “…”, the host stated, among other things: “We even have a minority in Serbia that has the lowest percentage of sickness… we have Roma, we have to look into that DNA, they were there even during the lockdown, they were on the street, while we sprayed bottles of milk with disinfectants, they ate and touched the handles, not to mention washing hands and wearing asks, there is something very resistant in their DNA, it should be… “.  The statement of BB and the host of VV stated, among other things, that they sincerely and deeply regret if any member of the Roma national minority felt discriminated against or insulted by the content of the show, that this television does not support discrimination, and that it has produced and broadcast separate shows dedicated exclusively to affirmation of the Roma national minority on numerous occasions. During the procedure, it was determined that the quoted statement of the host VV is a discriminatory act, which is given special weight by the fact that it was made through the media. The Commissioner pointed out that there is no relevant scientific research that supports the claim that coronavirus disease can be brought into any correlation with the race or national affiliation of an individual. At the same time, by saying that Roma do not wash their hands and eat and touch the handles, degrading stereotypes related to the low level of hygiene habits of the Roma population are openly promoted. The harmful consequences of such a statement are multiple, because, on the one hand, they can create a false belief among members of the Roma population about genetic superiority and that there is no need to adhere to epidemiological measures, while on the other hand, repeating offensive generalizations violates the dignity of the entire minority group. The Commissioner determined that in this way the dignity of members of the Roma national minority was infringed, which violated the provisions of Article 12 of the Law on Prohibition of Discrimination.


Brankica Janković


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