If there is one thing that Ada Colau’s detractors accuse her government of, it is favoring the occupation in Barcelona, protecting squatters and promoting their activity. Perhaps that is why the data that the Councilor for Housing has made known today is of special importance to the council, Lucia Martinwho, citing a municipal report prepared with figures from the Ministry of the Interior and complaints about occupations in the Catalan capital provided by the Mossos, has stated that the number of occupations is going down in the city, and that from 2019 to 2021 they fell by 7%.
The consistory highlights that in the same period they rose in Catalonia and Spain
In absolute numbers, the report indicates, in 2019 there were 1,610 occupations in Barcelona1,562 in 2020 and 1,502 in 2021. In the first half of 2022, until June 13, the figure is at 579 occupations. The city council maintains that among the families served by municipal services in 2021, 100% had occupied empty housesin 73% of cases from large holders, of which 79% are from financial entities.
The study underlines that in the 2019-2021 period, occupations increased by 15% in Spain (from 14,621 to 17,274) and 10% in Catalonia (from 6,638 to 7,345). He also argues that the figures for Catalonia are so high because it is the autonomous community with the most evictions in Spain “for decades” and by the high price of rents. Factors that, according to the report, stimulate the appearance of “mafias that want to take advantage of the housing emergency situation.”
Reply to Parera
The issue has arisen in the municipal plenary session of Barcelona and Martín has provided the data in response to a proposal from the group of valentinesdefended by its president, eve parera. The initiative calls for the town hall to create service points in the municipal service offices for small owners who suffer from occupations; create a special phone for these cases; offer free legal advice; prepare a census of occupied homes and premises that generate problems of coexistence or that are the scene of illegal activities, and urge the central government to change the law to speed up evictions.
Parera, whose proposal has been rejected, has accused the Colau government of encouraging the occupation: “I am asking about a crime and they answer me about the house & rdquor ;, has affirmed the councilor of Martín’s response.