Leave No One Behind! #NadieSeQuedaAtras
Agricultural workers and other disenfranchised neighbourhoods where people – women, children and men – are exposed to inhuman conditions at this time of COVID-19 in Almeria, Andalucia, Spain – launched March 31, 2020 by the Cultural Association of Almeria – La Resistencia
Almeria is the Andalusian province with the highest rate of child poverty (43.8% according to 2018 data), and the third in Spain, where the neighbourhoods of the capital as El Puche, La Chanca-Pescadería, Araceli-Piedras Redondas-Los Almendros and El Quemadero-La Fuentecica, have an average income six times lower than the richest area of the same city.
In addition, there are numerous shanty towns where thousands of people survive in inhuman conditions, without sanitation or access to water. It is therefore more than obvious that this province requires special attention in order to meet all the needs.
The organizations and groups that have signed this document express solidarity for the following denunciations and demands promoted by the Cultural Association La Resistencia Almería:
I.- LACK OF ACTION BY THE LABOUR INSPECTION SERVICES IN THE WORK CENTRES
We express the lack of actions by the corporations that keep their workers without the necessary resources to protect themselves. There are many corporations that continue to work without providing protection. The control measures established during the State of Emergency are systematically disregarded. For this reason, various organisations and trade unions are already dealing with the corresponding complaints in the care sector, the countryside, and in the places where work continues.
II.-DIFFICULTIES IN THE DISTRIBUTION OF BASIC RESOURCES IN THE SETTLEMENTS OF THE PROVINCE
Our concerns in this regard are many. We want to denounce the situation of the more than 4,000 people who live in the settlements of the Níjar region, or the 3,000 people who live in different settlements located in the municipalities of Roquetas de Mar and El Ejido, and especially the women and children. The people who live in the scattered farmhouses of the western area are the ones whose lives are put at risk – as they work to feed an entire continent that continues to ignore their working and living conditions – these are the workers in the fields and the care workers. We also want to denounce the suspension of the food distribution by the organisations cooperating in the Food Bank due to the lack of security resources and for fear of punishment fines.
In different settlements in the municipality of Níjar they have called for collaboration and solidarity because, although the UME (Spanish army’s emergency unit) has said that it will distribute hygiene and food kits in the area, they have still not intervened 10 days of the decree of the State of Emergency. First to denounce in this situation is is Atochares, a site in which more than one hundred people survive under plastic and wooden shacks where there is a significant group of people at greater risk in this crisis, as well as women, babies, children, and even people with serious illnesses whose situation is being ignored by the administrations.
III.-LACK OF COORDINATION IN THE COMMUNITY SOCIAL SERVICES OF THE MUNICIPALITY OF ALMERIA
Despite the fact that Almería City Council has received millions of euros in European funds to intervene in the most disadvantaged areas of the city, this money is not reaching the population. In different news channels, the Almeria City Council boasts of “exceptional social services” and the hiring of 47 professionals to support community social services, however, to date there is still no coordination to meet the needs of the most needy neighbourhoods. Only partially in some areas, but leaving neighbourhoods like Araceli-Piedras, Redondas-Los Almendros without coverage. These services should be coordinated by the Department of Education and in coordination with Community Social Services, but there is no attention in such neighbourhoods.
On the other hand, the homeless continue to be under served despite the establishment of the Albergue Inturjoven. The third sector is responding to those services that should be provided from the public service where we see how the Red Cross and Caritas are responding to those families that are not taken care of by their social services centres. And that they are also the ones that are taking care to guarantee the basic needs of the people in situations of vulnerability in the face of the inaction of the public administration.
IV. UNTRUE (FALSE) INFORMATION
The media are concealing information about abusive treatment, marginalization and neglect of people in extreme situations. The authorities and official agencies are also not being transparent with the information and attention to the people on the streets, those living in less well-off neighbourhoods, and people from settlements in different parts of the province.
In the face of all this, we demand:
- Urgent action to assist those living in settlements where there is a lack of light, water, food, sanitation and medicine.
- Act quickly and effectively, giving basic resources to all those who live in the most disadvantaged neighbourhoods. We are talking about food, light, water and medicine.
- Monitoring and checking of the corporations that continue their work activities, that they provide workers with the conditions of protection required by this situation.
- Better coordination between the different agencies that are currently working to provide effective support and cover all the needs that people may have (shopping, care, telephone assistance etc).
In view of this terrible situation and the lack of action by municipal, regional and state institutions, we ask for solidarity and support from organizations to join this manifesto. Furthermore, we encourage you to protest against these inequalities, to raise your voice and denounce similar situations that are occurring in your cities, towns and neighbourhoods.
Calle Murcia 20, Local. Almería 04004
Contact: [email protected]
For Sign-on by organisations and individuals:
The undersigned organisations and individuals support the denunciations and demands in this Declaration launched by La Resistencia – The Cultural Association of Almeria, Andalucia, Spain.