Thursday, 27 January 2011

The sad plight of the mentally ill sleeping on the streets of Spain

The sad plight of the mentally ill sleeping on the streets of Spain: "featured a British resident of San Roque, Mary Finlay, who is organising feeding trips to these unfortunates once a week – I will return to her work later in this article.
I start with the disclosure that at least two of the people on the town's streets are also mentally ill.

Their case has been highlighted by the Plataforma Los Parados – the action group speaking for the ten thousand plus jobless in the border town. They have written to the Andalucía Ombudsman over the men’s plight.

They say that because of the economic crisis, people with mental health problems have no roofs over their heads. Hence, they are sleeping outside in the winter cold and rain. One of these persons is 43-year-old Juan Medina López, who has been abandoned since before Christmas and is receiving no psychiatric help or social assistance. Nor can he and others like him be attended to at other municipal centres.

They told the Ombudsman that between Monday and Friday the men are invited for a meal and a shower at the Centro CEA, but at night they are left to their own devices. Incredibly, unless they are attended to by an Andalucía health service professional, they cannot be given a bed in any of the refuges for the “sin techos” – and no such person has been near them."

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