We need your support, we have a database of 25 people who came to our offices to report the "clean up" operation that took place on Thursday night in Cape Town and get support in retreiving their property and vent their frustration.
1. It was reported that the following organisations played a role in this operation - DFU, CCID, Law Enforcement and SAPS.
2. Most of the 25 people that reported their situation to MylifE sleep in the vacinity of Hope Street and have been given permission to do so by the owners of the buildings whose doorsteps they sleep on - and have done so for many years.
3. Most of the people were woken up on the streets and put in the back of Police Vans and taken to Central Police Station. They were "warned" that if they go back to their sleeping place (their homes) the same would happen to them on Friday night.
4. All of them had their property confiscated - this included clothing, vital medication, Identity documents, paperwork and blankets - their only posessions, the clothing on their backs. Some of these people were above 50 years old.
5. It was alleged that some of the homless were assaulted at the Police Station and referred to as "bergies".
6. One woman (42 years old) had a fit due to the trauma of the event which put strain on her breathing, she had a fit and vomited in the back of one of the crowded Vans. Her vital medication had been confiscated and SAPS took her to Somerset hospital where she was put onto an oxygen machine and drip to stabislise and treat her. She has never been in a Police Van and has spent many years on the streets. She has also been waiting 23 years for a house.
7. Most of them were not charged at the Police Station (I got one charge handed to us for PK) - neither were they searched, most of the people in the cells were concerned by the fact that there were scissors, belts and knives on them in the cells where they slept on cold floors with no blankets - stating there were at least 60 - 70 people that were locked up, some said more.
8. All attended community court on Friday morning where they were morpho touched and released
9. The DFU has not given back their possessions even though some of the Homeless have been to their offices to collect and are concerned that that they might dump all of these personal belongings. The Homeless alleged that this happens at least once a month where there possessions are taken and that the DFU is know to "sell their belongings" back into the Communitys.
MylifE called the Haven for support as most of the people locked up fit their age criteria, Dean at the CCID Social Development, Jantjie Booysen (City Council) Captain October (who was doing pamphlet distribution and knew nothing of the "event"), Pastor John and the Independant Democrats. Lance Greyling - Chief Whip for the ID came in to assist us with the 30 odd people who had gathered outside our offices as did Pastor John. We have footage that was captured as the people started arriving at our offices which I would like you to see as this is greater testimony than this email.
The matter has been reported to the MEC for Social Development - we want to know who was behind this campaign, why the NGO sector was not informed and why these measure have been adopted causing massive trauma amongst the effected people. We are taking down statements from people and they are wanting to lay charges against those responsible and the media has picked up on the story.
These are human beings, some of them old enough to be my father and as it is they are struggling, surving the streets with diseases from weak hearts, arthritis, HIV, TB, alcoholism, high blood pressure, fits and it is endless. This strategy does not work if there is not a place to take the homeless to, where they can be cared for and have no reason to come back to the streets. The young ones who came to the office just deal with it and get more hardened, the elderley have already surrendered. It was really sad to see that we are now criminalising the Homeless all over again when the only crime that has been committed is there is no solution to their plight!
The Homeless need your support to take legal action, please let me know what I need to do to make sure this happens.