Costa del Sol fire victims still left out in the cold after half a year of waiting

LAST UPDATED: 5 Mar, 2013 @ 07:34
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Costa del Sol fire victims still left out in the cold after half a year of waiting

By Frances Leate

SIX months on from the devastating fires that ripped through Malaga destroying hundreds of homes, scores of people are still desperately seeking the permission they need to start repairing and rebuilding.

The Junta banned homeowners from starting even essential repair work on their fire damaged properties until full planning permission had been granted.

However, as this process could take years and many people have been left homeless, victims were seeking permission to rebuild before the paperwork was processed because of their exceptional circumstances.

The Junta was legally required to respond to their requests within six months.

But so far homeless victims have had no response-and in the meantime they say what is left of their homes are being further damaged by the bad weather.

The victims launched pressure group, The Phoenix Campaign, with the support of the Olive Press in November to try and get things moving.

The British Ambassador has also written to the Junta de Andalucía to enquire about the situation but there has been no response.

The Defensora del Pueblo from Madrid also visited a number of damaged homes earlier this year but as yet their has been no action taken.

Sharron Cromwell, fire victim, said: “We were promised a response within six months at the latest and still we hear nothing.

“In the meantime we are expected to carry on living with friends or renting somewhere many of us can not afford.”

She added: “It is outrageous the way we are being ignored by the Spanish government.”

To get in touch with members of the group to offer support email: victimasdelincendio@hotmail.com

4 COMMENTS

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  1. “The Junta was legally required to respond to their requests within six months.”

    Which means absolutely nada since the Junta is a lawless entity that answers to noone. You’d have a better chance communicating with an extraterrestrial then with the Junta.

  2. Lets face it. The Junta de Andalucia is basically a 30 year Socialist dictator ship which is above the law. They have not the well-being in mind of their constituents as this example shows. Other examples are:
    1). Getting rid of all the radio stations who have been operating without a license simply because there is no mechanism in place to even get a license.
    2). Not solving the problems of the hundreds of thousands of illegal properties which have been allowed to be build under this Socialist dictatorship.

    They can not see the small boost it will give to the local economies if they solve these problems quickly. But that would involve work and creativity. It is much easier to go to Madrid or Brussels for hand-outs.

  3. Being a fool and trying to put out the fire in the garden of my urbanisation, i fell and broke the bones in my foot, (heel ankle and a few others). I was in a wheelchair for 4 months and have just started walking and driving again some 6 months down the line.I have been self employed in Spain for 7 years and have been unable to work. Social Security, the Junta& mijas town hall have been no help at all and offered no assistance. After paying 260 per month in social security for 7 years i have now stopped and will work work on the black. I would of been better off taking out private medical cover at 50 euros per month at least i would be better off today.

  4. David’s experience is all I ever hear from expatriates trying to work in this country. It’s a unbelievably stupid tax system that cripples people that are genuinely trying to work. Getting work itself is hard enough, without this hurdle. And Spain wonders why it is headed towards economic armageddon. This country has failed on so many levels, it beggars belief that Spain cannot create a fairer and more comprehensive system, especially given the economic crisis this country is in, and will be in for decades to come.

    David, as you will know, but just for the benefit of other readers, if you are self-employed you have to pay into the system. All autonomos, irrespective of the their income, are required to join the social security system under the Special Regime for Autonomous Workers. There are exemptions from autonomo, for people with just occasional work, like market stall traders etc, and for one-off periods of work.
    The Spanish minimum wage is currently €645,30 a month and anyone earning less than that can avoid paying social security, but you won’t get any benefits in that case.

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