Immigrant hunger strike goes on in churches
5 April 2005, BARCELONA-At least 250 immigrants were still continuing a hunger strike in five different locations in Barcelona over the government´s immigration amnesty.
5 April 2005
BARCELONA-At least 250 immigrants were still continuing a hunger strike in five different locations in Barcelona over the government´s immigration amnesty.
At least 50 Indians, Pakistanis and Bengalis were locked in the church of the Santa Maria del Pi in Barcelona.
Another 80 illegal immigrants were also locked in the Espai Obert centre in the Poble Sec area of Barcelona.
Another group of Bulgarians and Moroccans were locked in a similar social centre in the Sants area.
In the parish of Sant Miquel, in Santa Coloma, another 50 immigrants were holding a similar demonstration.
The protest, which started on Saturday, called for the support of all aspects of Catalan society for those without legal status in Spain.
The protestors claim the government´s amnesty on the normal regulations governing applications for legal status to live and work in Spain has not helped them.
The amnesty, which ends on 7 May, offers immigrants the right to work and have residency if they can show they have contracts of at least six months.
For domestic and agricultural workers this time period can be as short as three months.
It means Spain will grant residence permits to immigrants who can provide proof of their registration with a local council from before 8 August last year, proof they have no criminal record and a work contract of six months.
Once they fulfil these conditions and are given approval, immigrants are registered with the social security authorities and start paying contributions to the system.
Already 300,000 people have attained legal status.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news