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25th October, 2018

Doctors object to homeless decree

The Facebook group 1001 Physicians without Gratitude Money is protesting in an open letter against the decree that criminalises homelessness, in effect from October 15.

The members of the group “as physicians and responsible intellectuals” said they feel that they must speak up in the interest of their homeless compatriots because “poverty and homelessness should be prevented, helped, remedied and not criminalised”.

The group urges everybody to do their best to improve the life prospects and position of homeless people, and to respect their human dignity, adding that people in need should be able to ask for and receive genuine help.

They also ask the authorities to ensure adequate legal representation in the course of ongoing and future proceedings, on the basis of relevant legal regulations and order a medical expert if necessary.

At the weekend a lawyer initiated an online petition against the criminalisation of homelessness. It has so far been signed by 1,600 people. On Wednesday a number of sociologists endorsed it in an open letter.

Sources regularly consulted, with abbreviations used in text: Népszabadság (N); Magyar Hírlap (MH); Világgazdaság (VG); Napi Gazdaság (NG); Magyar Nemzet (MN); Népszava (Nsz); Kossuth Rádió news (KR); nightly TV news (TV).

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