International experts and representatives met on 24 November, at a workshop on sanitary implications of the mass-movement of people. The event was held as a preliminary activity for the 10th Conference of the International Society for Health & Human Rights (ISHHR) under the title “Mental health, mass people displacement & ethnic minorities”, also taking place in Novi Sad next year.

The aim of the workshop was to create a forum for exchange on the current accommodation situation and the sanitary conditions of detention centres for asylum seekers, refugees and migrants.
The participants discussed challenges related to the impact of mass migration on general and mental health, and possible recommendations to governments, agencies and civil society organisations.

The first of the three sessions was opened by representatives of national and regional government, speakers from CEI Member States and the CEI Secretariat who shared their knowledge on sanitary conditions and public health implications within mass migration in the region of Central and South-East Europe. The second session focused on psychosocial support and mental health with examples from Croatia and Serbia, but also from Norway, Switzerland and even Australia, giving an encompassing overview of the issue at international level. Participants eventually had the chance to discuss the challenges and recommendations.

The conclusions of the workshop pointed out that enhanced intersectoral collaboration, coordinated activities and regular exchange of expertise at international level are required in order to tackle challenges. Improved coordinated action would allow governments, civil society and international agencies to use their resources more efficiently and respond accordingly to the complex needs of migrants and refugees, especially those particularly vulnerable.
 
The event was funded by the New South Wales Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS) and the CEI Cooperation Fund.
 


 
 

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