Torture is legally defined by the 1984 UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. To obtain the protection that torture victims are entitled to, it is important that a legal identification is completed. To be identified as a torture victim means that professional experts have examined and analyzed the facts and essential elements of each beneficiary’s testimony, as well as the physical and psychological consequences of the torture. One of the best known methods to identify torture victims is the guidelines provided for in the so called Istanbul Protocol (The Manual on Effective Investigation and Documentation of Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment)
The consequences of torture are very individual and will remain a part of the life of every victim or torture survivor. The consequences can be physical as well as psychological and have to be treated by professional and trained experts.
Torture can have long term physical and psychological consequences on the victims
The physical as much as the psychological consequences, including disabilities, post traumatic stress disorder, increased anxiety, insomnia, depression, a feeling of guilt, shame or humiliation and other such psychological disorders may have severe consequences on the victims and their family life and well-being.
These consequences need to be discovered and addressed through the provision of assistance and rehabilitation measures.
Prometheus aim to improve and enhance the knowledge about torture in Greece and to establish a network of young professionals that work or are likely to work with torture victims
Prometheus has conducted 4 trainings for 90 professionals on the following subjects
- 5 day training to legal professionals on the national and international legal framework
- 5 day training on the social worker’s role in the treatment of torture victims
- 5 day training on the physical traumas experienced by torture victims (pain, head trauma’s etc)
- 5 day training on the psychological traumas experienced by torture victims (PTSD, psychoses, depressions etc)
In addition the staff of the Rehabilitation Unit has also received training on the identification and rehabilitation procedures and how to use a cross-disciplinary approach in the treatment of torture victims.
The training was provided by the project partner DIGNITY in cooperation with experts from Greece.