A VALENCIA charity that has been feeding around 600 homeless people daily from a trailer in the city’s Turia Gardens has been told to stop the service from January 1.
The Fundacion Ayuda Una Familia has been providing much-needed nourishment since a permit was granted on November 6, but Valencia City Council says another location is needed.
Parks and Gardens councillor, Juanma Badenas, said another area is needed for reasons of ‘health, safety, cleanliness and also for the dignity of the people’- something that did not appear to be a concern when the licence was granted.
He promised that a different space will be identified ‘as soon as possible’.
Badenas is the Vox spokesperson for the party’s municipal group on Valencia council and his far-right party is part of the coalition government team with the Partido Popular.
In a reference to a lack of public toilets, the councillor claimed the situation at the Turia Gardens ‘particularly worries him’ because ‘unworthy situations occurred there of people carrying out activities that should be carried out in private places and that they(the homeless) dirty the riverbed and our gardens.’
“Under the current circumstances, food distribution should have ended there a long time ago, but since they have the permit until January 1, it will be maintained until that date, but extending it would be reckless,” said Badenas.
“It is not right that people who live around the area where this occurs, and all Valencians, have to contemplate something that is absolutely inappropriate and unworthy for human beings,” he claimed.
Badenas said that an alternative location with toilets would be identified ‘as soon as possible’ but pointed out that ‘sometimes finding the space is not so easy’.
He pledged that people should find themselves in ‘a more dignified place’ where they can receive food’ but he did not reveal which places are being looked at.
In this regard, it has not been possible to reveal which places are being studied.
“I have asked my teams to find out and also to talk and exchange opinions with other councillors of the City Council and other services so that they can tell us what exactly we have, but we are going to try to do it as soon as possible and it is about making it a place fixed for winter and summer and also worthy,” he added.
The Partido Popular spokesperson, Juan Carlos Caballero, stressed that Social Services and the Valencia government team are also working close with the Parks and Gardens department to provide an ‘imminent’ solution to the issue.
“We are looking to find another place that is optimal for the health and dignity of the people that the charity can provide their service in good conditions. It is a priority,” he stressed.