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Statement from Fundación Secretariado Gitano following the death of a Roma girl in a fire in Linares (Jaén) [editar]

The house is located in an area where there is a high concentration of Roma population and presents problems of habitability.


Statement from Fundación Secretariado Gitano following the death of a Roma girl in a fire in Linares (Jaén)

On 21 February, a fire started by a heater in a building in the Arrayanes neighbourhood of Linares (Jaén), which affected several homes, including that of the family of Antonia, a 10-year-old girl who is a participant in our educational support programme Promociona. As a result of smoke inhalation, several people were injured and, unfortunately, Antonia was unable to overcome it and died.

From Fundación Secretariado Gitano we are very saddened by what happened, especially our territorial team in Linares, which has been accompanying the family since the fire occurred.

We would like to express to her parents and siblings, as we have already done in private, our most sincere condolences for the loss of their daughter. We place ourselves, as they know, at their disposal to accompany them in all the procedures they wish to carry out, respecting in any case their decision and the time they require, given the very difficult circumstances in which they find themselves.

We appreciate the actions of the City Council of Linares and the Housing and Rehabilitation Agency of Andalusia (AVRA in Spanish), providing the family with the necessary resources and we call for the difficulties that this family and the rest of those affected will continue to be solved. In short, we hope that the administrations will provide all the aid and resources available for this type of emergency situation, on equal terms.

Finally, we would like to point out that this type of incident demonstrates the tragic consequences of poverty and, above all, how it impacts on children living in poor households. As we have seen in the recently published results of the Living Conditions Survey, child poverty has increased in recent years in our country. It is a structural situation that especially affects many Roma families and that, together with residential segregation and substandard housing, exposes children in particular to the violation of their rights and to these kinds of fatalities.

We urge once again, therefore, to take decisive measures to combat poverty and child poverty, as well as to eradicate residential segregation and guarantee the right to decent and adequate housing for all people.