WORLD SOCIAL WORK DAY 2016
Celebrating World Social Work Day in Brussels, Belgium - 14th March 2016 - “Working in Partnership to Promote the Rights, Dignity and Worth of Refugees in Europe”
The International Federation of Social Workers – European Region (IFSW Europe) along with the European Association of Schools of Social Work (EASSW) and Union Professionnelle Francophone des Assistants Sociaux (UFAS), IFSW’s Belgian member, celebrated World Social Work Day 2016 at the European Economic and Social Committee (Comité Économique et Social Européen) in Brussels, Belgium on March 14th.
Over a hundred social workers and students of social work attended the event that focused on social work and the refugee crisis in Europe.
Ian Johnston, IFSW Europe Representative to the European Social Platform and Liliane Cocozza, President of UFAS chaired the sessions’ event, welcomed participants, explained the purpose and history of WSWD events and stressed the importance of the theme.
The speakers stressed that the European Union is violating human rights and the rights of the Child by their inability to find a sustainable solution for Europe to receive and protect refugees and migrants. José Antonio Moreno Diaz, human rights lawyer at EESC, highlighted that this situation is about human beings, not "volumes" or "numbers".
Jana Hainsworth, Secretary General of Eurochild and President of the European Social Platform criticized and questioned that people helping refugees are considered criminals. Josefine Johansson from the IFSW European Executive committee described the role that social workers have in promoting Dignity and Worth of refugees and migrants from the reception of refugees on the shores of the Mediterranean to the asylum countries in the North of Europe. Anna Metteri from EASSW argued that the need for a critical perspective is more needed than ever and gave examples of how schools of social work in Europe have organised voluntary work with refugees. The event ended with discussions and comments from the audience.
A transcript of the proceedings in French and English will be available shortly.
Photos from the Brussels’ event on World Social Work Day – 14th March 2016 - are available on the following link: