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Santa Cruz calls for proper policy on homelessness 

Santa Cruz is once again calling on the Canary Government to formulate “an effective strategy for the homeless”.

The city council wants the new Minister of Social Policy, Cristina Válido to make it a matter of priority and says she must get together with local corporations to find “a response to this phenomenon.”

Seventh deputy mayor and councillor of social care of Santa Cruz, Óscar Garci’a said it was effectively being left to local authorities to deal with homeless people who had no work and no money.

Santa Cruz was one of the municipalities represented when a meeting was held on the issue, together with the councils of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, La Laguna and Telde.

He recalled that they met with Tenerife Cabildo and the Canary Government more than a year ago to set the foundations for a joint strategy on homelessness in the archipelago. Since then, however, there had been no progress so new actions had to be taken with urgency over a problem which “will not just disappear” and had to be taken very seriously.

Sr. Garcia said: “We need more than a diagnosis, we need to establish a model of effective coordination of services and resources at regional, island and municipal levels dedicated to the care of homeless people.”

” We have waited too long for the new Law on Social Services and for a clear definition of the portfolio or catalogue of services to which the citizens are legitimately entitled; and without those tools it is difficult to advance, ” he argued.

He said they recognised “the will of the Government in this new stage of budgeting social policy but it is still essential to redefine the current model, management procedures and the pending issue of coordination among all.”