We report that our CNT comrade, María Jesús Vila Calviño, also known as Chus, who lives in Fuerteventura (Canary Islands), has been on an indefinite hunger strike since Tuesday evening in order to protest, not only about her personal situation (no job, no unemployment benefits, no financial assistance, no roof because of the impossibility of paying rent), but also about the situation of so many people who live under similar (or even worse) conditions.
Due to this fact, Chus has occupied the square just in front of the Government Office of Puerto Cabras (Puerto del Rosario), where she will stay day and night with the support of friends and comrades. Up til now she has been visited by the Minister of Social Welfare of the Council in Fuerteventura and the Councillor for Culture of the Town Council of La Oliva. The Local Representative of the Government has demanded the local police of Puerto del Rosario clear the public square in which she is camping. On the other hand, the Red Cross in Fuerteventura has informed that it cannot support her at this moment due to the lack of personnel, although it is organizing shifts with volunteers to see the Chus’ needs. The support of the people in Fuerteventura is impressive and Chus is really moved.
María Jesús states that her decision “is necessary as a means of pressure” to achieve a “radical” change in the social policy applied by the Government which, according to the striker, “has not understood yet” that the numbers given by the media are people, and “if they let the people starve to death thrown in the street, they will see it with their own eyes”.
Attached is the letter that the comrade has submitted to the Government Office, Council of Fuerteventura and Town Council of Puerto Cabras, in which she clearly voices why she made this drastic decision.
María Jesus Vila Calviño, resident of the island of Fuerteventura
I am on HUNGER STRIKE, being of sound mind and memory, in good health condition and with no organic problems that can cause my death during the following three or four months. Therefore I hold the national, regional and local government accountable for my death and all the possible consequences derived from this strike which I am carrying out after running out all the civilized resources that I had at my disposal as a regular citizen. This is a decision I take by exercising my sovereignty over my own life, as an adult person and aware of what I am doing. Hence no one can accuse third parties of urging me to adopt this attitude.
I will be physically on hunger strike in the 1º de Mayo Street, in front of the Government Office and Town Council of Puerto del Rosario in Fuerteventura. I will personally inform people.
The reasons which force me to make this action are obvious: the attitude of the Government of this country which allows almost 6 million people to have no job and no prospects to find any, that 512 families are being evicted from our houses every day because we cannot pay. Before of these situations the state of neglect in which people find themselves is manifest.
Being myself in this situation, without options or alternatives, and being helpless and neglected, I am forced to carry out the above action as a way to put pressure for the radical change of the social policy of this Government, which has not understood yet that the above mentioned numbers are people.
IF THEY LET US STARVE TO DEATH THROWN IN THE STREET, THEY WILL SEE US.
I hope that this action will be useful to raise public awareness on this issue, emphasizing the fact that these numbers are translated into persons, like myself, and having in mind that numbers are not so evident as individual and/or collective actions.
The end of this hunger strike will be determined by the solution of the conflict or the death of the person who writes this letter.
Puerto del Rosario, 7 August, 2012