Croatia is a European country situated at the crossroads of Central Europe, Southeast Europe, and the Mediterranean. Its nighbouring countries are Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Hungary, Serbia, Slovenia and Montenegro. Croatia joined the European Union in July 2013 and with a population of 4 290 612 it ranks among smaller countries. According to the 2011 census Croatia is inhabited mostly by Croats (90.4%), while the most important minorities include Serbs (4.4%), Bosniaks (0,7%), Italians (0,4%), Albanians (0,4%) and Roma (0,4%). The Constitution of the Republic of Croatia specifies 22 minorities explicitly. The dominating religion is Roman Catholicism (86,28%) following by Eastern Orthodoxy (4,4%) and Islam (1,47 %). The Croatian language is the official language of Croatia, but minority languages are also in official use in local government units where more than a third of the population consists of national minorities or where local legislation mandates their use. Croatia has a generally good legal framework for the protection of minorities, but there are still certain problems connected with full implementation of this legal framework in practice. Ethnically- motivated incidents against persons belonging to national minorities, in particular the Serbs and Roma, continue to be a problem in Croatia, with many cases of attacks remaining unreported due mainly to a lack of trust in the police and justice systems. There are also still reports of police misconduct against members of vulnerable groups. As for Roma minority a serious problem is still a high dropout rate at elementary level among Roma children as well as extremely low numbers of children who continue into secondary school. Unfortunately, national minorities also continue to be under-represented in the public administration and the courts. On the other hand a well-developed system of minority language education exists in Croatia, permitting students belonging to national minorities to receive instruction in or of their languages. Moreover, significant resources have been invested in recent times in addressing inequalities faced by Roma.

USEFUL LINKS

Report on the status of human rights in Republic of Croatia 2014:
http://bit.ly/1OEt37l

The Constitutional Law on National Minorities:
http://bit.ly/1M0YFNY

Act on Life Partnership for people of the same sex:
http://bit.ly/1ZRsU4e

Asylum Act:
http://bit.ly/1OEt77e

Electronic Media Act (it has some articles concerning minorities):
http://bit.ly/1M0YJgP

POLICY RECOMMENDATIONs: Conflicts of extradition law and refugee protection law: Mutual recognition of asylum and non-refoulement among EU Member states:
http://bit.ly/1W18oJD

Center for Peace Studies Publication: Asylum in Croatia: Integration policies:
http://bit.ly/1M0YMZX

Violence against lesbians, gays and bisexuals in Croatia: research report:
http://bit.ly/1GPjCtR

LGBT Manual on Anti-discriminatory provisions and laws of the Republic of Croatia:
http://bit.ly/1M27nBL

National Strategy for Equalization of Opportunities for People with Disabilities (2007. – 2015.):
http://bit.ly/1PusXPW

The Law on Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment of Disabled Persons in Republic of Croatia:
http://bit.ly/1XfzIGP

Fostering effective inclusion of people with disabilities in the labor market – STUDY:
http://bit.ly/1OEtLBI

Gender analysis of key strategies, policies and documents that affect the daily lives of women with disabilities:
http://bit.ly/1hO0Igy

National Roma inclusion strategy 2013.-2020:
http://bit.ly/1LkrfN7

Roma everyday life in Croatia: obstacles and opportunities for change (2014.):
http://bit.ly/1GeKJUp

Roma Early Childhood Inclusion study for Croatia (RECI+, 2014.):
http://bit.ly/1XfzRtz

Development of Media Responsibilities to Strengthen Social Integration of Roma population (2014.):
http://bit.ly/1GmW44O

Presentation and Transmission of Minority Interest in Public ( 2014.):
http://bit.ly/1hO0LZu