Sir E.E. van der Laan LLM Mayor of Amsterdam

To: Sir E.E. van der Laan LLM Mayor of Amsterdam City Hall Amsterdam Van: WIJ ZIJN HIER Encampment at Notweg 32 Spokesperson Ahmed 1068 LL Amsterdam Osdorp Amsterdam, 5 November 2012 Dear Sir van der Laan, During your visit at the demonstrative encampment WE ARE HERE of refugees on the street in Osdorp, you made an urgent request to the demonstrators to reduce their number to a maximum of sixty persons. You also invited to register themselves with the GGD with a view to temporary shelter. We are pleased to present you a few proposals which meet your concerns about the camp and which also supply the expressed wishes of the general meeting of the camp, briefly: together, safe and visible.   Your most urgent concern is that in your view there are staying too many people in the camp. That’s why we propose to confer – short-term – with us about the possibilities of obtaining a building under the responsibility of the Foundation Refugees off the street, in formation (Stichting Vluchtelingen van de Straat i.o.). Please find the brochure and the articles of bylaws hereby. The plan of Refugees off the street is to find a building where the refugees can be together, safe and also visible. They wish to continue their demonstration in the building. It is the express wish of the refugees to only move into the building, if the City can approve this plan. For the design and management of the building the foundation Refugees off the street will act as guarantor. Its executive committee is leaded by initiator Joost Pothast, architect, and Fred Stammeshaus, founder and manager of Urban Resort. As you already know, the demonstrators refused your request to register witht the GGD with the view to shelter for the night as part of the ‘winter cold regulation’. Last Saturday they have collectively rejected that option because it is at right angles to their formulated wishes: together, safe and visible. The building that we try to find among the countless empty buildings in Amsterdam, will house a program of activities which will be supported by the undermentioned supporting organisations and numerous designers and artists under the direction of Jo van der Spek of M2M and Diana Krabbendam of The Beach Company and Nieuw West Expres. At the same time the building could help to solve the problem of temporary shelter during the winter for refugees without a roof over their head. Since the start of the encampment in Osdorp the efforts of the supporting organisations and persons are aiming at lasting, pragmatic and step by step solutions. We expressed this in our opinion article in het Parool dd. October 3, 2012. This article was also an appeal for cooperationweg to find creative solutions.   We therefore ask you again to explore this approach and by doing so to clear the way to find creative solutions. We are confident that you will let us know soon when you have the opportunity to deliberate with us on this matter. Respectfully, On behalf of WE ARE HERE: Ahmed from Somalia, spokesperson camp Mamadou from Guinée, in behalf of the Francophones in the camp Supporting organisations: Stichting M2M Jo van der Spek Van Ostadestraat 49 1073 SN Amsterdam Tel.. 0651069318 en 0686263381 E-mail: Stichting i.o. Vluchtelingen van de Straat Joost Pothast Tel. 0611800889   E-mail: Women against deportation / Vrouwen tegen uitzetting Marjan Sax Mieke Maassen Nova Zemblastraat 598 1013 RP Amsterdam E-mail:

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