Bordeaux: the Free Zone squat under eviction threat

Alert, Friday morning, October 16, police officers came to the Free Zone squat (La Zone Libre) and began a census of the inhabitants, then abandoned it due to the absence of many (work, school, various activities). When questioned, they suggested that the eviction could take place on Monday morning, October 19th.
A support meeting to propose mobilization and response to this unacceptable eventuality took place at the Free Zone.
A concert in support of the Free Zone was planned for this Sunday at the Rocher de Palmer (a concert hall and loyal support for the Free Zone), in Cenon.
In addition, a rally will be held on Saturday, October 17, at 3:00 pm, Place Pey Berland, in support of the March of the Undocumented and against squat evictions.

The Gravelotte squat on September 25th, then Lajaunie squat on October 2nd, mass evictions of squats resumed in Bordeaux. Each time, hundreds of people, families, and children are thrown into the streets in a veritable “state abuse”.
The Zone Libre (also known as the Ramadier squat in Haut Cenon) with its 80 families, 300 people, and 100 children (80 of whom are in school), is threatened.

For almost a year now, this atypical place of life has been living an extraordinary experience, which has allowed families who have experienced the uprooting of exile and at home, the street, to rebuild themselves. The new residents have restored the apartments, created gardens, grown flowers and vegetables, organized and assumed the collective tasks of maintenance, garbage collection, management of water. They spoke at weekly assemblies, mobilized in June to meet the elected representatives of Cenon and journalists and show their determination not to suffer further violence and a return to chaos, to the street; they organized parties and meals, became friends, accompanied their children to the cinema, to the museum, to shows, participated in discussion groups, ensured that school trips, art workshops, dance, yoga, clowning. .. are always well attended even in the middle of summer.
The exciting experience also applies to all the volunteers, artists and associations who have lived it by their side since the first day.

Now or never they need our support, our presence, our determination. They will tell you about their daily life, their successes and their setbacks, their hope rooted to the hope of getting papers despite their daily fear of deportation.

The Free Zone squat (la Zone Libre)
Avenue Roger Schwob, La Morlette, Cenon, France

Gathering for the arrival of the “March of the Undocumented”.

On October 17th, 2020, at 3 pm, we call for a rally to join the demands of the “march of the undocumented” and denounce the living situation of the exiled. We will gather in front of the city hall for the demonstration heading to the prefecture, the symbol of all evictions.

Since September 19th, the “march of the sans-papiers” has been converging on Paris and demanding an end to police violence and the hunt for migrants and undocumented. It denounces state racism and demands the regularization of all illegal immigrants, the closure of the Administrative Detention Centers (CRA) and that housing be made available to all people on the street. Along with them, we defend these demands. In general, the issue of illegal immigrants is debated from a state perspective. Often invisible, these people live in the city and make it alive. They are disregarded by the public authorities, exploited by capitalist forces that take advantage of their vulnerability. The management of the Covid-19 pandemic by the states and the wealthy classes has made the most excluded members of our societies even more precarious.

More locally, Bordeaux is facing a new wave of evictions of people living in precarious conditions… These evictions, violent both physically and symbolically, are now supported by surveillance tools (drones) reminiscent of the worst futuristic authoritarian regimes of Hollywood cinema. In this period of pandemic and under the pretext of health measures, the prefecture has even limited the activity of associations of solidarity with migrants. Waves of evictions are taking place almost everywhere in France, all against a backdrop of political and media rhetoric focused on insecurity and separatism.

If we look at the new mayor’s promises, we realize once again that it is indeed the effects of communication and lies that structure our bourgeois and authoritarian democracy. The private interests of the wealthy remain intact, while disinformation and media campaigns about the occupation of uninhabited places remain powerful and organized, as the Théoule-sur-Mer affair shows us, which has been repeated over and over again by the media. Buying out squats even becomes a business with people like Yann Thiolet (from Squat Solutions)! Yet, contrary to what is put forward through the image of the “bad squatter who dispossesses you from your home”, the figures remind us that eviction decisions linked to occupying someone else’s home only represent 1.5% of eviction judgments. Most of them actually take place in large, often public, uninhabited buildings, and these buildings often come back to life thanks to these new dynamics of reappropriation of the city.

These are therefore many political choices that we are facing. These choices are part of a more systematic logic, which accepts and legitimizes the enslavement and economic exploitation of capitalists in the countries of the South, of those who live there, and more broadly of the workers of all countries.
Let us recall that during the peak of the pandemic, the first people to take risks were still the most precarious, including those in an irregular situation. They worked in key sectors of our society such as hygiene, hospitals, transport and services. They delivered our meals. They were employed by cleaning agencies and worked on our tramways.

It is for all these reasons that we will gather on October 17th and invite every organization and individual to demand :

– The non-intervention of the forces of repression in all places of life!
– The immediate closure of the CRAs (Administrative Detention Centers) which constitute the most authoritarian legislative framework of absolute restrictions of liberties in rich countries because no charges are brought against people other than the fact that they have no “papers”!
– Regularization of all undocumented migrants, without conditions and without distinction between individuals
– A roof for everyone. Here we offer a solution: the requisition of all empty houses and the repeal of anti-squat laws!
– A tax on large fortunes to finance the construction of housing and so that it is not just our class that has to pay the price of crises, economic and social health.

Refugees related groups in France
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