Keywords: Roma Camps; Urban Policy; Housing; Urban Vulnerability; Integration.
The tough and segregated lives of thousands of Roma individuals in our cities is indicative of the failure of our governments - with their different political orientations - to deal with issues concerning urban marginalisation, discrimination and the construction of equal cities. Local administrations have failed, so far, to implement immigration policies that may effectively include social groups with 'different' social practices, most notably those families who have been living in Roma camps for decades now and who struggle to escape from their marginal conditions. With the exception of a (limited) number of successful interventions at the local level, governments proved incapable of addressing the situation of Roma camps, whether illegal or authorised, where urban problems such as deviance and people's reliance on the subsistence economy are only exacerbated. This article brings together findings from a study conducted over the last years in different Italian cities and which intended to provide a practical answer to the problem of Roma camps and to the inhuman living conditions experienced by successive generations of Roma families and children in our cities.