The article addresses the issue of the Romanian Roma migration and of its causes, beyond a simple economic explanation, and it consists of three main sections. First, it documents the problem of Roma’s access to resources in the early years of post-communism, pointing to the role of legislation and that of the foreign aid. The second section deals with the negative perceptions of the majority and their violent consequences. Finally, the third section addresses the institutional discrimination carried out by the medical authorities, the police and the government in general. The concluding argument of the article is that Romanian Roma’s seeking asylum or residence abroad should be treated primarily as refugees under the Geneva Convention rather than as illegal economic migrants.