Migrant Fatalities, Identification and Data 2016

Together with various actors, such as government representatives, international organisations, academia, NGOs and grass root initiatives, this GMDAC workshop fostered discussion on what is needed in order to improve identification rates and how to include families who have lost loved ones in these procedures. A focus of the workshop was the collection, management, exchange of the relevant data and the involved ethics in this. After two days of very constructive discussion, the participants concluded by identifying and agreeing on points of action:

  • Establish the network of actors present at the workshop in a more formalized manner;
  • Form specialized working groups;
  • Develop protocols for good practice.

Please see below the documentation of presentations held at the workshop and the workshop report.

Introduction: Setting the scene. What is known and what is unknown? A global overview of data on migrant deaths.

Dr. Frank Laczko, Tara Brian and Julia Black (IOM): Migrant Fatalities, Identification and Data.

Session 1: Management of the dead, identification and data in the Mediterranean context. Challenges for local authorities and national governments, in an international context.

Vittorio Piscitelli (Special Commissioner for Missing Persons, Ministry of Interior, Italy): Missing Persons – Missing Information.

Stefanie Grant (Centre for the Study of Human Rights, LSE): International Legal Framework Relevant to the Identification of Deceased Migrants.

Costas Couvaris (ICRC): Greece 2014 – 2016 ICRC Forensics + RFL.

Session 2: Families of the missing migrants – challenges and needs. What difficulties do families face and how can relatives be included in identification processes?

Dr. Robin Reineke (Colibrí Center for Human Rights): The Colibrí Center for Human Rights.

Federica Riccardi (ICRC) Families of Missing Migrants: challenges and needs. A Needs-Based Approach.

Session 3: Strengthening data systems. What are the problems for making better use of data and how can they be overcome?

Dr. Penelope Miniati (Forensic Science Division, Hellenic Police, Greece): DNA Analysis & Centralized DNA Database: Useful Tools in Identification of Deceased Migrants and Determination of Familial Relations.

Oran Finegan (ICRC): Forensic data and the challenge of migration – Observations from the ICRC.

Concluding roundtable discussion: Challenges, possibilities and needs for improving policy.

Andreas Kleiser (ICMP): Improving the Availability and Quality of Data: Migrant Fatalities.

Note: This workshop was funded by UK aid from the UK government; however the views expressed do not necessarily reflect the UK government’s official policies.