On February 16th people from more than 50 cities in Spain (see map) took to the streets to protest against the plague of evictions that is starting to be known all around the world.
The PAH (Platform of those affected by the mortgage, see NL#19, 4 ) made a national call (see NL#36, 1 ) to pressure Spanish MPs to address the issue and ratify the bill as a law: the ILP (Popular Legislative Initiative, NL#12, 2 ) is not negotiable at all! The answer was massive: thousands of people (around 60,000 in Barcelona) marched yelling, banging drums, blowing horns, wearing their famous green t-shirts, and waving banners and STOP desahucios signs. Foreign press from the whole world gave a great echo to the protest (see our links below).
Up to this very moment the PAH has managed to stop 576 evictions. A small, but powerful drop in the ocean of evictions in Spain, with around 500 homes evicted every day in 2012. The platform empowers victims to make them become activists against their own problem and supporting fellow citizens in danger of eviction, and its system of physically blocking the entrance to buildings and occupying banks to demand solutions for specific cases has become the strongest weapon against media silencing: by now a really high percentage of the Spainsh population has seen some action or another by the PAH, making everyone aware of how this drama is reaching neighbours close to their homes.
The Spanish Congress was supposed to vote the ILP on March 7th, but it has been postponed to April. The AEB (Spain’s Association of Banks) is against the assignment in payment and the ruling party (PP – Popular Party) is preparing an alternative proposal so as not to damage the banks. Meanwhile, even people who voted PP in the last elections are supporting PAH’s initiative, seeing how the unemployment rate is growing and people simply can’t be losing their homes in such large numbers. Newspapers are finally addressing the problem seriously: the number of suicides by people being driven to despair at the prospect of being evicted has increased alarmingly these last few months, and it is no longer easy to silence.
On the other hand, after two firemen of A Coruña (Galicia) were reported by the police for refusing to help evicting a 85 year old woman recently, also firemen from Catalunya, Madrid, and Mallorca declare that they are not going to help evict people anymore. Firemen’s disobedience adds up to the locksmiths’ one previously announced.
If the ILP is not entirely ratified it seems the PAH is ready to promote a massive “escrache” or stalking (See NL#38, 1 ) against politicians and bankers who are responsible of the non approval of this initiative.
In Spain it seems that civil disobedience is on its way. The latest slogan says “PAH is #imPAHrable.” Social justice is #unSTOPpable.
- PAH website [SP]
- Map of #16F PAH’s demos in Spain
- Map and list of the evictions stopped by PAH
- List of suicides attached to recession and austericide in Spain [SP]
- ILP explained at wikipedia [EN]
- Suicides due to evictions in Spain [SP]
- Protests at evictions in Spain [EN]
- 1000s of Spaniards say ‘no more evictions’ [EN]
- Spaniards Protest Against Evictions [EN]
- Thousands take to the streets against Spain’s ‘financial genocide’ [EN]
- The demo in Sevilla [SP]
- The vote for the ILP has been delayed [SP]
- Locksmiths and firemen refuse to aid evictions [EN]
Last NL articles
Videos, pictures & streaming
- Video Demo en Santander
- Video PAH’s evaluation of the demo and next steps [SP]
- National demo’s report by Canal Sur [SP]
- #16F in Mallorca by Sa TevaVisió [SP]
- #16F in Malaga by Acampada Malaga [SP]
- #16F in Barcelona Photogallery by GroundPress by@Fotomovimiento
- #16F in Madrid Photogallery by @Fotomovimiento and by @FotogrAccion
- #16F Barcelona Streamings by @okokitsme
- The fireman refusing to help to evict Aurelia, the 85 years old woman, min 14,10 by Guaroucuac
Accounts: @LA_PAH @PAH_BCN
HT: #16F #16fBcn #16fMad #Razones16f #imPAHrables #LaILPnoSeNegocia #ILPoEscrache