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POEDIN File Complaint, 1500 Refugees Living in Squalor at Psychiatric Hospital in Greece


Fifteen hundred migrants and refugees are living under squalid conditions at the Leros Psychiatric Hospital, along with 154 patients, according to a complaint by the Panhellenic Union of Public Hospital Employees (POEDIN).

The public hospital workers union says that there are 154 patients currently at the Leros Psychiatric Hospital, while authorities have established a refugee reception center inside the hospital premises.

According to POEDIN, the original plan was to temporarily accommodate migrants and refugees at the hot spot inside the Leros Psychiatric Hospital premises. However, the hospital has “gradually evolved into an open hosting structure” where, as they say, “750 people can barely fit in the premises and now the place hosts more than 1,500”.

Moreover, in the front building of the hospital there are nursing wings where 154 mentally ill patients are treated. In the middle of the premises, an open accommodation structure has been established, leading to an uneasy coexistence between the patients and the asylum seekers.

“There are constantly new refugees and migrants arriving on Leros,” the POEDIN complaint states, “who are now accommodated in three completely inappropriate buildings, ready to crumble, as the Technical Services has reported. Inside the hot spot, there are unlawful incidents taking place in front of patients, patients are harassed, fires are lighted and the asylum seekers show uncontrolled and abusive behavior that puts in danger the lives of patients. The hygiene conditions are unacceptable.”

According to POEDIN, the union of the Leros Psychiatric Hospital and Leros General Hospital the workers have submitted complaints on the terrible situation in the last three years, but with no results.

“Now that the government decides to relocate thousands of refugees and migrants from the islands, it is imperative to abolish the hot spot housed in inappropriate buildings inside the Leros Psychiatric Hospital for health and national interest reasons,” the POEDIN statement continues.

And it concludes: “We call on the political leadership of the Ministries of Health, Migration Policy, and National Defense to act immediately to relocate refugees and migrants.”

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