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Human Trafficking

Prevalence, Abuse & Exploitation of Street Children

In the first decade of the 21st Century                                             

Republic of Hungary

Hungary has made the transition from a centrally planned to a market economy, with a per capita income nearly two-thirds that of the EU-25 average. The private sector accounts for more than 80% of GDP.

The global financial crisis, declining exports, and low domestic consumption and fixed asset accumulation, dampened by government austerity measures, will result in a negative growth rate of about -1.5% to -2.5% in 2009.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]


CAUTION:  The following links and accompanying text have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Hungary.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspect(s) of street life are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring how children got there, how they survive, and how some manage to leave the street.  Perhaps your paper could focus on how some street children abuse the public and how they are abused by the public … and how they abuse each other.  Would you like to write about market children? homeless children?  Sexual and labor exploitation? begging? violence? addiction? hunger? neglect? etc.  There is a lot to the subject of Street Children.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.


Check out some of the Resources for Teachers attached to this website.


Business Hungary - Shadows Of Poverty

[Last access date unavailable]

ONE-TENTH OF HUNGARIANS LIVE IN DESTITUTION - Despite the economic expansion following the early 1990s, one million Hungarians live in abject poverty. The figure is contrast to the majority who benefited from years of accelerated productivity growth, soaring equity markets and relatively low unemployment rates. The typical Hungarian family increased its net worth significantly as house prices, stocks and wages rose. But quietly in the shadows is a sizeable proportion of people who have been left behind, with little hope of catching up in the near future. In Budapest alone, authorities estimated that the number of homeless doubles to 30,000 during wintertime.


*** ARCHIVES ***

The Department of Labor’s 2003 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

U.S. Dept of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs, 2004

[accessed 8 February 2011]

INCIDENCE AND NATURE OF CHILD LABOR - Children work as beggars in urban areas, and also as prostitutes, according to Budapest Police, although the scope of the problem is unknown.  Schools in ethnic Roma communities are in markedly poorer condition, and according to UNICEF, less than 2 percent of Roma children graduate from secondary school.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 9 February 2020]

CHILDREN - The government was committed to children's rights. The law provides for compulsory education, which was free through age 18 for children who were born after 1997. The Ministry of Education estimated that 95 percent of school‑age children were enrolled in school, although the drop-out rate for Romani children was much higher than for the overall student population. NGOs reported that only 10 percent of Romani children complete high school, compared to 80 percent of the general population.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, 5 June 1998

[accessed 8 February 2011]

[14] While the Committee notes with appreciation the measures taken by the State party, including the adoption of government resolution No. 1093/1997 on a package of medium-term measures intended to improve the living standards of the Roma population, it remains concerned about the persistence of discriminatory practices against this minority group.

[34] The Committee recommends that the State party envisage undertaking further measures to prevent and redress unequal access to health services and to the education system between the rural and urban population, and in particular to facilitate the access of Roma children to health and education. The Committee also recommends that health services and medical supplies be equally distributed between and within the local governments. Schools and vocational training should be made accessible to poor children and those living in rural areas, especially children belonging to the Roma population.

Budapest Portal :: Meet Budapest - Municipality of Budapest

Municipality of Budapest

[accessed 23 May 2011]

III. After the political changes (1990-) - YOUTH PROTECTION - The Budapest Municipality offers homes for children and young adults under state care. The number of child and youth protection facilities is currently 34, providing residence, education and care to children and youth aged 3 to 24. In 2001 the Budapest Municipality budgeted 6.1 billion forints (25.4 million euros) for child and youth protection. This included 1.5 billion forints (6.2 million euros) spent on renewal and development. The Budapest Youth Fund was set up in 1992. Its main task is to handle youth problems and support meaningful leisure activities, summer camps and multilateral youth projects of the European Union.

Feeding Program, Hungary

World Job and Food Bank

[accessed 23 May 2011]

It was established that a Teen Drop-In Center needed the help of outside resources because it was lacking funds. This Drop-In Center for teens provides counseling services and skills training.  Approximately 30-50 teens visit the center daily, and many of them are hungry and do not have enough food.

A Dynamic Social Policy For Children And Adolescents In Towns And Cities

Parliamentary Assembly Social, Health and Family Affairs Committee, Rapporteur: Mrs Edeltraud Gatterer, Austria, Group of the European People's Party, 10 September 2001

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 9 Aug  2013]


27. It is difficult to estimate the actual numbers of street children or children on the streets and any figures offered have to be treated with caution and as a probable underestimate.  Some figures are available – for example, the figure in Romania is put at about 3,500 children; in Poland at 5,000; the Czech Republic at 1,300; and Hungary at 1,200 though these are recognized as gross underestimates.

In Depth Study - Street Children

Fides Service, Vatican City, 2004

[accessed 23 May 2011]

IN EASTERN EUROPE - The phenomenon, practically non existent before 1989, has shown itself with increasing intensity parallel to wars. In the Russian Federation there are about one million homeless, 60,000 of them in Moscow. In Budapest there are over 10.000.

Abandoned Children And Infants

Justin D. Long, Monday Morning Reality Check, 1998

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 23 May 2011]

MORE THAN 22,000 ORPHANED AND ABANDONED CHILDREN are in state custody in Hungary. A string of infanticides and stories critical of adoptions by foreigners made the news in 1996. After 54 children were killed by parents who could not afford them, the Agost Schoepf-Merei maternity hospital in Budapest put an incubator at its entrance so mothers could anonymously leave unwanted babies. The majority of abandoned children are Gypsies and few Hungarian parents want them; these are the ones most up for foreign adoption.

Székesfehérvár in perspective: Roma and housing in Hungary

Csilla Dér and Betty Eberle, European Roma Rights Centre ERRC, 2 April 1998

[accessed 23 May 2011]

A wave of evictions of Roma is presently taking place in Hungary. The Hungarian daily Magyar Hírlap reported on December 10 that in mid. November, authorities in the 8N District of Budapest had begun evicting families illegally residing there. The 8th District of Budapest is home to a large part of Budapest’s Roma community. Similar evictions of Roma families in the 11th District of Budapest were also reported to the ERRC in November.

Missionaries Offer Good News To Hungary's Roma Villages

W. Evan Golder, United Church News, June 2004

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 23 May 2011]

The 1 or 2 million Roma in Hungary represent the country’s largest ethnic group. "The plain fact of the matter is that the Roma live without enough food, without basic health care, without access to education and often without shelter," wrote Stephen Cho in a missionary report. "They are often treated as criminals and have been marginalized in Europe and in Hungary."

how, when and why - Cameras In The Hands Of Some Of The City's Homeless People

Dominic Hislop  -- [A project by Big Hope: Erhardt Miklós / Dominic Hislop]

[accessed 23 May 2011]

As the sociological definition of homelessness covers a broad range of living situations, we decided to distribute the cameras not only to people who were at the most extreme case of sleeping rough, but also cameras were given to people sleeping in overnight shelters, women's shelters, young people's shelters, and the longer stay one month contract shelters.

Innovations for the elderly. A permanent shelter for elderly homeless in Miskolc

Vera Gáthy, Senior Researcher at the Institute for Social Conflict Research at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 23 May 2011]

[Page 3] THE IMPACT OF INNOVATION - The reason why rehabilitation has become so important is that with the passage of time the age structure of homelessness has been undergoing changes.  There is a new batch of homeless: young people, who are released from state foster care where they can stay up to the age of 24 and then have to go out. They have no money, nowhere to go, no jobs and immediately become homeless.

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