About the humanitarian crisis in Lesvos
September 9, 2020 - For the purposes of protecting public health for everyone, without discrimination, Prolepsis Institute points out that a solution needs to be found as a matter of emergency, to the issue of providing accommodation to thousands of migrants in Moria who have to sleep in the streets, fields and mountains of Lesvos after the refugee camp was destroyed by the fire.
It is highlighted that fumes from burnt materials endanger the health of the refugee population and those living near the area. Immediate measurements should be made of the level of air pollution from fumes and microparticles, which can endanger the health of those exposed directly and in the long term. Action should be taken before the resettlement of refugees and migrants.
Lacking access to adequate and clean water, sanitary items and protective equipment (antiseptics, alcohol, tissues, soap), adequate and healthy food and health care, 13,000 people experience yet another uprooting and a constant crisis.Thousands of women and children among them constituting the most vulnerable population, face multiple risks.
This situation, coupled with the feeling of uncertainty and prolonged confinement, is also exacerbating mental health, which is one of the most serious health issues that refugees and migrants face, according to studies of the European Program Mig-HealthCare.
The State’s actions for safe housing, food and access to health care for the migrant population in Lesvos and the protection of public health must be immediate. Special actions are required for people who were tested positive for coronavirus and are likely to experience racism, in addition to the disease.
The State’s response to this crisis as well as the attitude of all of us, determines our society as a whole. Equality, assistance to fellow human beings and respect for diversity, constitute fundamental values that need to be put into practice in these difficult times.