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(en) Czech, afed: FNB Ostrava faces repression

Date Mon, 5 Aug 2019 08:45:10 +0300

The Food not Bombs Ostrava team is exposed to official bullying, which fully manifested itself on 7 July during the regular distribution of food to the needy. ---- Already on Sunday, the town official Vladimíra Plechácková, who presented herself as the "Secretary of the Vítkovice Town Hall", came to the place of distribution, although she is actually from the Finance, Budget and Education Department at the Ostrava-Vítkovice District Office. Members of the team commented on her visit: "She wanted to arrange a permit with us so that we could continue this initiative, only under the patronage of the landowner and the town hall. We said we were working and that we hardly had time to give out on our own day off every Sunday, let alone go to a town hall. "

The next Sunday, dear Mrs. Plechácková, accompanied by about ten gendarmes from the municipal police, who surrounded the car with food, prevented the distribution of food and claimed that the local people complain and that those present do not have permission. In their official constraints, none of them could understand that the FNB was not an organization and that it had no leader. Eventually one of the hungry called the state police. The naivety of that step became apparent as the uniformed characters greeted each other, chatted, and embarked on an even more fuss. FNB activists present forced them to show their citizens. In the spirit of solidarity, the homeless people of the Ostrava FNB have also stood up, chewing on cops and wishing them to live on the street and experience homelessness.

The FNB Ostrava team subsequently issued a public statement on the incident, describing the principles of its operation and, among other things, stating: "We are convinced that food is a right, not a privilege, and it is the right of all, without distinction. We want to exercise this right in an environment that is safe not only for us, but especially for homeless people who come to us with confidence every week. We believe that our activity does not correspond to an activity that requires occupation and that we do nothing contrary to the local ordinance. We are determined to persevere in our actions and believe that we are doing the right thing. We call on the Municipality of Ostrava not to repress citizens' initiative and freedom. At the same time, we urge the Ostrava-Vítkovice district not to criminalize our informal solidarity with homeless people and not to label our activities as undesirable. "

But the challenge was obviously not answered. On Sunday, July 28, there was another repressive fuss, on which members of the team commented: "Although last week the City Police officers told us that until the offense had passed, none of us would have the legitimacy, the opposite was true. Verbally aggressive police officers forced a member of our team to legitimize by placing a pub on the wall occupying a public space. " .

If you are annoyed by bullying activities to help homeless and resourceless people, you can take a number of steps: disseminating information about ongoing buzz (on your site, on social networks, improving leaflets...), writing emails and letters to the Ostrava Municipality and the city part of Ostrava-Vítkovice, sending to the team of the FNB Ostrava manifestations of solidarity (eg demonstrative collective photographs...), to implement some form of public protest, to hold a lecture on Food not Bombs and repression against this initiative,

Update: Monday 5.8. Benefit Burgers will be held at the Salé Information Center in Prague. On-site photo, petition to sign and screen short documentary about FNB.

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