The appeal by Councillor Nader Rekik about people without papers living at 184c boulevard Leopold III raised questions in the council meeting on Thursday evening. The Molenbeek Saint-Jean mayor, Françoise Schepmans, has therefore decided to describe the situation and the position of communal authorities. The number of people there varies from 150 to 200 people. The building is a former home, made up of around thirty one bedroom apartments. After several warnings to the landlord, the communal services were ready to tax the building, which had been empty since December 2012. The group’s arrival at the end of June stopped this.
The mayor thinks that, at this point, no security hygiene or food safety elements justify ending the occupation.
Various communal representatives have been going there since the beginning. The situation is regularly monitored. The last check done on Tuesday says the building is well maintained. There is electricity, fire alarms, and fire exit stairs are accessible. Two fire hoses give the floors water for hygiene. The group has defined interior regulations and monitors the entrance day and night.
The last CPAS medical report on the 28th of July says contagious illnesses are rare and not very dangerous. The people are looked after by either the CPAS if they fall under he Urgent Medical Aid (Aide Médical urgente (AMU) or Fedasil. The CPAS also distributes blankets, provides showers for the women and children in the Centre d’Accueil and gives flu vaccines. Doctors have been visiting the fifty people on hunger strike since the 14th of November.
A more precise social check of the situation for each household will be done, to consider temporary accommodation.
Sarah Johansson (Source: Belga)