Italy Under Eviction

Collection with 43 media items created by Serene Yordi

26 Jul 2013 10:00

This is the story about the families of migrants and Italians facing the crisis with unemployment, high costs of life, and the precarious situation of losing the basic right to housing.

Technically, it’s called “guilty arrearage” and ends in eviction because of the poverty of the inhabitants. In 2013 in Italy 250.000 families risk this to happen to them, that’s an average of 140 evictions a day, almost 6 each hour. In the following years this phenomenon could even be more widespread due to the abolition of public support (“Fondo sostegno affitto nazionale”), which has been helping more than 350.000 families pay their rents. Even as the pressure on housing in the social emergency rise some 5.000 public houses remain empty, waiting to be surveyed and brought up to standard to be inhabited, and that’s just in the city of Milan.

I’ve built a close relation with several families and followed their stories from the notification of eviction to the day itself and being pushed out. Often the police and legal officers prevent me doing my work so I turn my focus to the other aspects of these stories, particulars that can reveal the dramatic experiences going on in these families lives. After the eviction, in fact, some families were rehoused temporarily, others went to cheeap hotels with the support of the municipality, but many others had no other choice than to sleep on the street while they await decisions being made on access to public social housing (which they have right to).

Many stories are focused on women who had only a part time jobs or no job at all, like Letizia, Maria, Cadija, Edy, Pina, Genny and Pina Cortese who we see in my photographs, all struggling to pay their rent, many have lost that battle already.
Cadija is from Morocco, she’s been living in Italy for 8 years. She’s unemployed and has a 17 years-old son. Cadija has already received three eviction notifications. Cadija has not received news of her husband, a Syrian national who went back to his homeland before the war started. She lost her job and now she hopes to received public social housing before eviction day.
Letizia experienced eviction in January. She has a 15 years-old daughter and her part time income does not allow her to pay the full rent. After the eviction she received a small flat to live, thanks to a local community association, but this solution is temporary and she hopes to receive full public social housing soon.
Maria has lost her job recently and was evicted from her home two months ago. Now she’s hosted in an emergency shelter run by a local organization. Edy was evicted last December and has a new born baby girl only a few months old. The society for whom she was working did not pay her salary for many months and in few months time her contract will change from full time to part time so her salary will decrease. Now she is staying at a friend’s apartment.
Pina is living at the first floor of a building without an elevator, she is severly disabled and has received her eviction notice.
Genny is living in the same building. She has no regular job and she has a chiold with special physical needs who can not live with her because of the lack of facilities in the house. She is expecting eviction soon.
Pina Cortese is 28 years old and she works in a shop in the city centre. A local committee of inhabitants protested and halted her eviction for the moment.

There are also stories of people who leave the country they have chosenre-migration to return to their place of birth, because of the lost of job and housing. This is the case for Peppe, a 53 year-old man living in the North of Italy for many years and now returning to Naples because of the loss of his job, the difficulty to find a new one, and the eviction that happened last January.
A similar story is that of a family from Egypt who have been living in Italy for the past 8 years. When Mohamed lost his job and his wife lost her permit to stay because she lost her job too, they decided to return to Egypt, just few days before they were evicted.

The families with many members are the most vulnerable, families of up to 6 often live in a 40 square metre apartment with little or no means to apply to public housing to relocate. The Mauhay family, Arnold, Mardy and their children Adrian, Alessa and Angel, were living in a house in the north of Milan. The building was very badly maintained, the stairs had no lights and the dangerous electric wiring affected their house. After their eviction they are living in a hotel with the support of the municipality.
Valeria and Mario were the guardians of a villa belongiong to a rich family in Milan. After they lost their jobs they found themselves, at the age of 60 unemployed like their two 30-year-old sons. After the eviction they are seeking support from a local organization.
Kumara and Mary are, as many others, victims of the illegal rent black marke). As they are undocumented migrants it is impossible for them to register without permits for a housing contract. When they tried to ask to the house owner to give them a proper lease he increase the rent. They were unable to pay and soon after received an eviction notification. Now Kumara is living in his car, and Mary is hosted in a protection housing with their son, Nathaka.
Flavio, Rosaria and Nancy are a young family. Flavio has no regular job and Rosaria is a teacher with an unstable contract. Two months ago a committee of local residents protested their evicition and won a temporary stay for the family.
The Al Badaui family is composed of Ayman and Abir, Maram, Mariam, Mohamed and the little Samer. Abir does not speak Italian and takes care of the house and family while Ayman works as a cleaner at the airport. When his working hours were reduced he became unable to pay his rent so they received an eviction notification. The committee of residents in their block organized a sit-in and their eviction has been postponed. The family has some chance to receive a public social house, but, as Ayman told me, the solidarity his family has received from the local residents has given them the most support, restoring their strength and their sense of humanity.

For a more selective photo essay, click here: http://www.transterramedia.com/collections/1324

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Valeria and his husband Mario used to work as gatekeepers in the villa of a wealthy family. After their layoff, they live with the retirement plan of Valeria. Mario and his son are currently unemployed. After their eviction, an association found a temporary accommodation for them.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
26 Jul 2013
  1. The Mauhay family in a hotel, just after the eviction. The municipality pays for a hotel accommodation only when the evicted families ask for an emergency procedure. If their request is judged positively, then they receive a temporary accommodation before of their housing project apartment.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The Mauhay family waiting for the police officers to evict them from their house.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The Girardi family: Flavio, Rosaria and Nancy. Flavio works occasionally with a terminable contract, and Rosaria works as a temporary employee in a school. They are under eviction.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Peppe is unemployed, and is living in Milan. He was evicted last January, and after that he decided to go back to Naples, his hometown.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Interior of Peppe's house. He is waiting for the eviction with his partner.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The two-room apartment of the Al Badaui family.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Genny works occasionally. Her partner is an illegal immigrant and they are under eviction. The social services took away her disabled son because she doesn't live in a safe place.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. A sit-in of no-eviction committees in a condominium where around ten evictions are soon to take place. Pina Cortese shouts against the landlord of some crumbling 20 sq.m apartments where the monthly rent is 600€.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Maria on the day of the eviction. She used to live in a 15 sq. mt. Studio-flat, but since she has been fired she has been unable to pay the rent anymore.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Edy was evicted from her house last December, even if she has a daughter who is just a few months old. She doesn’t receive any wage from the society she works for, and in a few months her contract will switch from full to part-time.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Mauhay’s two-room apartment. Five of them used to sleep in this room; Adrian, the oldest son, slept in the living room.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The bedroom of the flat where the Mauhay family used to live.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. A building in Milan, where six notices of eviction were given to the families.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The suitcases of the Al Badaui family. The eviction is delayed thanks to a no-eviction sit in organized by a neighborhood committee
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Maram Al Badaui is seen packing her suitcase on the day she has to leave her house.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The municipality office that deals with the housing project and the evictions.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The housing conditions are often unbearable: systems are not compliant with current regulations and masonry are deteriorated, but rents do not seem to decrease.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. They have been living for 8 years in Italy. He lost his job. His wife is not eligible for the Italian visa as she is unemployed. A few days before the eviction, they decided to move back to Egypt.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Cadija lives with her 18 years old son in a 25 sq. mt apartment. She lost her job, and her son is attending a professional high school. They live in a two-room apartment, and they cannot afford the rent. They will be evicted soon.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. The kitchen of a 30 sq.m two-room apartment that is under eviction.
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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
25 Jul 2013
  1. Exterior of a house under eviction in the north of the city.
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Italy Under Eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Mary and Nathaka Serasinghe in a foster home, where only women and children can be accommodated.

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Italy Under Eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

After the eviction, the municipality social service relocated Mary and her son Nathaka to a foster home. The social worker explained that the law is for the protection of the child. This forces them to settle without Mary's husband in the housing.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The Serasinghe family are going to the municipality office that deals with the housing project and the evictions.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Mary and Nathaka Serasinghe were born in Sri Lanka, they met in Milan and married in their native land. Speak little Italian, even if they live here for eight years, and now have a child, Nethaka. Since he was born in the small are list for the allocation of public housing.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Kumara, Mary and Nathaka Serasinghe used to live in a 40 sq.m. two-room apartment, paying 600 euro for month. Mary is out of work and Kumara is a day laborer in a store in the outskirts of Milan. For legal immigrants, in fact, the registration of the lease is required to obtain residence and renewal of the "residence permit". When they applied for registration of the contract house's to get the "residence permit" of Mary, the owner increased the rent, at which point they are no longer able to pay the rent and arrived the notice of eviction.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Kumara and Mary Serasinghe are from Sri Lanka and they came in Italy eight years ago. They are, as many others, victims of the illegal rent black market. It is estimated that in Italy between 500 thousand and one million apartments are rented in black, resulting in a high tax evasion. For legal immigrants, in fact, the registration of the lease is required to obtain residence and renewal of the residence permit.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Mauhay’s two-room apartment. Five of them used to sleep in this room; Adrian, the oldest son, slept in the living room.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The Mauhay family are going in a hotel, just after the eviction.
While they are waiting for the Aler (private entity for the management of public housing) to define their position, the municipality of Milan will take over the temporary accommodation in hotel for Mardy and his sons, but Arnold will have to pay for his stay until the final assignment. They are waiting for many months the allocation of public housing.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The Mauhay family inside the municipality office.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The Mauhay family are going to the municipality office that deals with the housing project and the evictions.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The stairway of a block of flats totally occupied by migrants. The two-room flats are crumbling down to piaces and not complying with the law. The renting fees are too high for the economic possibilities of the families.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Arnold and Alessa Mauhay the day of your eviction

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

Alessa Mauhay is seen inside her house during the eviction.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
15 Jul 2013

The Mahuay brothers outside of your house

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The housing conditions are often unbearable: systems are not compliant with current regulations and masonry are deteriorated, but rents do not seem to decrease.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The Mauhay family waiting for the police officers to evict them from their house.

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Italy under eviction
Milan, Italy
By Alice Sassu
14 Jul 2013

The bathroom of the Mauhay family's house.