Following on from our article expressing concern for the safety of UK holidaymakers in Magalluf and also a genuine concern of the effect of crime on tourism, it appears that our commentary was not misplaced!
We can see that some have seen the post on our Facebook page and have advised that the locals in Magalluf are intending to carry out a protest march on Sunday 15th June 2014 in Magalluf in Majorca.
I have 3 initial questions:
- What I wonder will the UK holidaymakers make of that and will UK Journalists and TV Companies, who so like to report on the 'antics' or British youth or UK Celebrity life, actually turn their pens and cameras toward the march and the high-stake issues that make up this protest?
- Will the UK Foreign Office highlight this protest and the reasons that lay behind it, within their Travel Advisories for the benefit of UK Holidaymakers?
- Will UK Travel Companies start to warn intending holidaymakers of the real problems that they will face if they visit Magalluf and the reasons behind the protest to those holidaymakers already there?
I have been concerned to further read that not only are the problems not confined to Magalluf but they also appear in the resort of Arenal; in this same article it speaks of the situation being 'out of control'.
On the Facebook site I mentioned previously, BTW Calvia, I also note the photographs taken by their contributors apparently showing some of the prostitutes in action, but it is clear that frustration of a lack of action is beginning to develop strategies to deal with or cope with the scale of the problem, including:
- Blowing whistles whenever the 'mugging prostitutes' appear;
- Some allegedly throw water on the 'mugging prostitutes' to try and dissuade them from being in that area;
- One contributor suggests carrying a sock full of coins!
- Some report that there are victims of 'robbery' every night!
My concern is that because the Authorities have failed to deal with this problem, the innocents in all of this, the local residents, business people and the holidaymakers may become either directly or indirectly motivated to take their own action with dire consequences.
It doesn't matter whether 'street prostitution' is not illegal - Robbery, Theft, Assault is and technology is available to gather evidence, so that the perpetrators of these crimes - and that includes those that 'run' them, or those who 'sponsor' their arrival in resort, can be brought to Justice; so why hasn't that happened?
Just to give you a flavour of what we have been hearing of in the past few weeks, from the resort of Magalluf alone:
- Whistleblowers in the resort have been threatened;
- An 83 year old man was apparently subject to an attack in resort;
- The Playa de Palma Authorities have apparently set up a support service for the 'Prostitutes' who they fear may be threatened by 'Mafia bosses';
- Wokers selling 'pub crawl tickets' are having their earnings retained and beaten if they complain;
- 6 Scottish men were apparently beaten because they complained about a 'pub crawl';
- There are serious concerns as to the availability of first-aiders or lifeguards on some 'booze cruises';
- Questions over the 'available' jobs and threats made to young job-seekers from the UK;
- 'Prostitutes' are apparently throwing bottles at tourists who refuse to go with them;
- A local Magalluf resident apparently suffered with a slash cut to their face;
- 'Prostitutes' have apparently been entering bars and allegedly attacking staff.
So again I ask; how bad has it actually got to get before the Island's Athorities take action to protect holidaymakers and their own tourist trade?
I want to give thanks to those that posted on our Facebook page informing us about the protest march; we were nonetheless aware of the intended march which was originally planned for Sunday 8th June.
At that time, we were also advised that the protest planned had raised concerns in some quarter's, with some holding the apparent view that somehow the intending protestors should be discredited.
If this is correct, then those who would seek to discredit legitimate protests should remember that Spain is a signatory to the:
- EU Convention on Human Rights:
- Article 2 - The Right to Life;
- Article 5 - The Right to Liberty & Security of Person;
- Article 10 - Freedom of Expression;
- Article 11 - Freedom of Expression and Association;
- Article 17 - Prohibition of Abuse of Rights
- The Lisbon Treaty attached to which is the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Unon:
- Article 3 - Right to the Integrity of Person;
- Article 6 - Right to Liberty and Security;
- Article 11 - Freedom of Expression and Information;
- Article 12 - Freedom of Assembly and of Association;
- Article 20 - Equality before the Law;
- Article 33 - The ight to Family and Profesional Life;
- Article 41 - The Right to good Administration;
- Article 47 - The Right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial;
- Article 54 - Prohibition of Abuse of Rights,but
- Most importantly, consideration must also be had to the Spanish Constitution, because this document not only gives Rights to Spanish or naturalised Spanish but also to 'aliens', in other words, visitors:
- Section 13 (1) - Aliens in Spain shall enjoy the Public Freedoms;
- Section 15 - Everyone has the Right to Life and to Physical and Moral integrity;
- Section 17 - Everyone has the Right to Freedom and Security;
- Section 20 (1) (a) - The Right to freely express and spread thoughts, ideas and opinons through words;
- Section 21 (1) - The Right to peaceful and unarmed assembly is recognised;
- Section 21 (2) - Following notification of meetings or demonstrations in a Public Place the Authorities can only object if they fear disorder threatens persons or property;
- Section 51 - The State shall take steps to protect Consumers and take 'effective measures' to protect their 'safety, health and legitimate economic interests'.
These are substantial rights, particularly for those Europeans visiting Majorca, whether it be to Magalluf, Arenal or any other troublesome resort. These are important rights not only for local residents but also for visiting Consumers. Spain should remember that their own Citizens enjoy the same protections whenever they visit other EU Member States, particularly under that Country's own Constitution.
So, I again ask, given that Section 51 of the Spanish Constitution is quite clear about the necessary steps the State has to take to protect Consumers, on whose watch has this complete failure on Majorca occurred and what are the powers-to-be going to do to urgently address the situation?
We will continue to watch and report!