The Demands of the Exiles

A long process of discussion took place, within and between each community, before agreeing on a common wording. It lasted part of yesterday and today and resulted in the following text, addressed to the prefect of the Pas de Calais and delivered to the subprefect.
It was also taken to deputy Yann Capet, who came to meet the refugees and the associations at the food distribution center.

“Mr. Prefect,
We invite you to come and meet with us to discuss solutions to our situation. You will find our demands below.
In the meantime, we ask you to accept our sincere greetings.
The refugees present in Calais.

We, the homeless migrants of Calais, have occupied the food distribution center. All of the communities have come together and decided to unite to find a solution for our situation. We do not want to live like animals anymore, we want to live like normal human beings and to have access to dignified living conditions, no matter whether we have papers or not.

We have all come to Europe to demand asylum and we have reasons for doing so in the country of our choice. The vast majority of us wish make our claim in England. Those who were still not convinced, after staying in Calais for some time and having seen the disgraceful living conditions here and the treatment given to asylum seekers, do not want to live in France.

We can no longer accept that dogs are treated better treated we are and we will not leave here until we are guaranteed access to living conditions worthy of human beings. We will stay and resist here, united and visible, until our demands are heard. We wish to meet with you to share the following demands:

Houses in Calais for all the migrants who wish to go to England and for asylum seekers who are forced to live in the street
Houses with decent hygienic conditions: toilets, showers, garbage collection
Houses where we can come and go whenever we like, in order to be able to continue trying to cross to England
Houses protected from police controls, harassment and evictions
Access to three meals a day
Negotiations between France and the United Kingdom to allow people access to British territory.”

Banners on the fence of the food distribution center

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