Short Summary

Solid and credible findings on psychological and physical injuries in court or asylum procedures require special medical and legal knowledge and standards, that are defined by an important but insufficiently known joint United Nations/World Medical Association protocol (Manual on Effective Investigation and Documentation of Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, “Istanbul Protocol” (IP)). The physical and psychological sequels to violence can be used as evidence in the investigation of alleged violence, in monitoring of places of detention, asylum procedures and documentation,  while the protocol also demonstrates how to protect the survivor against distress in the interaction with the asylum and other legal systems.

The European Union Leonardo project "Awareness Rising and Training for the Istanbul Protocol" (ARTIP) supports the interdisciplinary use of the Istanbul Protocol by legal, social services and health care professionals in the assessment of torture and other forms of violence.

The project provides easily accessible trainings in all legal and health aspects of the protocol for professional groups working with refugees and survivors of social violence, including social workers, lawyers, psychologists and medical staff. Services implemented include local trainings, and empower local professional target groups to provide such assessment and documentation.

The newly developed training structure is modular and can be adapted to different participant groups, with a special focus on interdisciplinary collaboration. It can be easily embedded in the short time windows of professionals involved in high workload fields such as work with refugees, legal, medical and social services. The package includes an e-learning and open classroom component that can be used in preparation and for continuous training, and an expert network database to be consulted for advice and supervision after trainings.

Besides building expertise and contributing to increased awareness, ARTIP can be used to increase the public understanding of the situation of refugees and survivors of violence.

The project is coordinated by Prof. Thomas Wenzel (Medical University of Vienna, Austria), in collaboration with European partner Universities and NGOs, including the Greek Academic Network and Vienna (Boltzmann Institute for Human Rights (Prof. Manfred Nowak, former UN special rapporteur on torture)). It collaborates with all interested local NGOs and governmental agencies.

The activities are supported by an expert advisory board, peer review and through collaboration with local NGOs, specifically aiming at supporting this local partners in their work with refugees and victims of violence.


logo"This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein."


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