An evacuation operation at the San Ferdinando shanty town, in the province of Reggio Calabria,  March 6, 2019 | Photo: ANSA/MARCO COSTANTINO
An evacuation operation at the San Ferdinando shanty town, in the province of Reggio Calabria, March 6, 2019 | Photo: ANSA/MARCO COSTANTINO

As part of response measures to the coronavirus emergency, the Calabria regional government has put into place mobile teams on campers to provide assistance to migrants in the area around the towns of San Ferdinando, Rosarno, Taurianova, Cassano allo Ionio, Sibari, Corigliano-Rossano and the area around Crotona,

Mobile teams on campers, made up of a doctor, a nurse, and an intercultural mediator, were put into place in recent days in the areas around the towns of San Ferdinando, Rosarno, Taurianova, Cassano allo Ionio, Sibari, Corigliano-Rossano and the area around Crotona to provide assistance to migrants regarding prevention of COVID-19.

The initiative is being provided by the welfare office of the Calabria regional government as part of the project "Su.pr.eme. -- the south protagonist in overcoming emergencies" and the project "Più Su.pr.eme", effective in the four regions of the south: Basilicata, Campania, Puglia, and Sicily. 

The Calabria regional government has a memorandum of understanding in place with those regions to develop interventions regarding immigration. 

According to a statement from the Calabria regional government welfare office, the initiatives are aimed at fighting gangmaster exploitation, favoring integration, and facing the health emergency. 

Preventing the spread of coronavirus 

The region is currently awaiting for "procedures to be put into place relative to the measures planned in relation to the health emergency." 

In the meantime, however, activities are underway to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the areas where informal settlements exist. The welfare office coordinated with parties willing to provide added health services though the urgent enactment of mobile teams.

Projects for informal settlements 

The statement said the two projects, Su.pr.eme. and Più Su.pr.eme, concern "the informal settlements in the areas of the Gioia Tauro plain, Sibari, and the Crotona area." 

It said Su.pr.eme. is financed by the European Union with resources from the emergency Asylum, Migration, and Integration Fund (AMIF). It is led by the Italian labour ministry in partnership with the labour inspectorate, social security and pensions agency INPS, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and the non-profit Nova Consortium. 

Più Su.pr.eme is financed by the labour ministry as part of the National Operating Plan (PON) for Inclusion European Social Fund (ESF) 2014/2020. 

Gianluca Gallo, Calabria regional councillor for welfare, said financing for the two projects is "more than six million euros, divided between various lines of action: initial reception, widespread accommodation, restoration of city areas and facilities, job placement, support to towns and job centres for taking on clients, new business development, and health prevention". 

"The region's strategy, which was enacted starting in the planning phase, is that of dialogue and collaboration with local entities and territorial stakeholders with competencies in the sector," Gallo said.
 

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