The Ad-Hoc Committee of Experts on Roma and Travellers issues (CAHROM) of the Council of Europe has just released a thematic report on health mediators. It comprises a country-by-country description on the situation of health mediators, good practices identified as well as possible follow-up for the improvement of the employment situation of health mediators in the country of focus.
The thematic group on Roma health mediators was set up following a proposal to host a thematic visit made by the Bulgarian CAHROM member (National Council for Cooperation on Ethnic and Integration Issues of Bulgaria) . Representatives from Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Poland, “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia” and Turkey confirmed their interest to join this thematic group.
According to the report, "the setting up of such a thematic group was also a concrete follow-up to the action undertaken by the Council of Europe together with the European Commission under their joint ROMED programme, to the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers Recommendation CM/Rec(2012)9 on mediation as an effective tool for promoting respect for human rights and social inclusion of Roma, as well as to several years of experience gained at training Roma community members to become Roma health mediators in many European countries. [...] As the health dimension is an inevitable part of comprehensive policies and national strategies for the inclusion of Roma (and Travellers), some actions are being undertaken for improving the Roma situation, either by national authorities, or through international funded programmes. The joint Council of Europe/European Commission programme ROMED1 which aimed at training Roma mediators, including Roma health mediators has contributed to reinforce mediators' skills and to facilitate communication and cooperation between Roma and public institutions, including health services (doctors, nurses, hospitals, etc.)."