Sit-in protest over closure of homeless shelter in Granada

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Following the closure of a Granada night shelter on March 24, which served as a makeshift shelter for over fifty homeless individuals, the lack of response from the Granada City Council has spurred the La Calle Mata Platform into organising an event to raise awareness and demand action. The group plans to hold a night-long vigil in Plaza del Carmen on Thursday, April 18, from 9 p.m. to 10 a.m. the following day.

Loli Ortiz, representative of the group, told Costa Tropical TV, “Our view is that politicians have the obligation to serve all citizens, including those who live on the streets. We want the emphasis to be placed on housing, as it is in the Constitution and in the declaration of human rights. That would be a permanent solution which would enable these people to organise their lives and reenter society.”

The primary objective of the vigil is to highlight the needs and perspectives of the homeless population through an assembly at Plaza del Carmen, scheduled for 10 p.m. on April 18. This gathering aims to provide a platform for the voices of those affected, highlighting the challenges they face and the solutions they seek.

The organisers also plan to extend an invitation to the mayor and the Councilor for Social Policy to attend and address the situation. With over 300 people forced to live on the streets of Granada, there is a pressing need for concrete actions to address the growing homelessness problem. The current situation forces homeless individuals to seek refuge in parks, abandoned sites, doorways, and ATMs, exposing them to harsh weather conditions and security risks.

The demands put forward by the organisers include advocating for the fundamental right to housing as the ultimate solution to homelessness. They call for the provision of affordable housing options that are easily accessible to those in need. Additionally, urgent measures are requested, such as the establishment of reception centres in each neighborhood to alleviate overcrowding and provide immediate assistance.

The organisers are also calling for the establishment of a year-round centre where homeless individuals can access support services consistently, without having to resort to makeshift solutions. This includes the employment of social and professional educators to provide compassionate and effective care to those in need. Additionally, facilitating their registration to access essential rights and services within the city is deemed crucial.