The social usefulness of the homeless

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Cécile ROCCA

Co-ordinator of the action group ‘Les Morts de la Rue’ (The Street Dead)

Seminar Social life | Friday June 17, 2005

The homeless are often the object of a veterinary approach : they are fed, they are sheltered, they are tracked under the pretence of being given help, and some town councils regard them in the same way as dog droppings... The action group ‘Les morts de la rue’ gives them dignified burials and defends their social usefulness. The homeless are constantly present in the public domain, they inform people, watch out for traffic wardens, help handicapped people, do favours for shopkeepers, speak with people who are alone, and raise questions about the malfunction of our society. Contrary to the struggle against exclusion which sometimes appears to betray a wish to eradicate the excluded, Cécile Rocca, a leader of the action group, campaigns for the integration of these people into our social groups (political and religious ones as well as associations). At the beginning of the session, Francis Cymbler presents a brief performance which is inspired by his experience of life on the streets.

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