Social center Es.col.a. (Porto, PT) evicted 19.04.2012 15:48 Themen: Freiräume Weltweit
The former primary school building in the Fontinha neighborhood in Porto has been abandoned for 5 years before a group of people decided to squat it and open for the local community to create a self managed social center. People were evicted from the building after a month of functioning and continued the activities on the streets of the neighborhood.
After negotiations with the city hall, the project was allowed to go back to the building and a commodity contract was promised by the municipality. The contract was never sent, but the municipality threat that the Es.col.a. will be evicted again in March.
They sent police forces this morning, 19 of April, few days after Es.col.a. was feasting it's first anniversary. There where about 30 people in the terrain, making pacific resistance. Police came in large numbers, around 200 officers of municipality police and intervention police. They did not present any legal documentation validating their action, most of the police officers refused to identify themselves and were not wearing identity cards on their uniforms. After an hour long operation, all the people were taken away from the Es.col.a.'s terrain. After that the police forces together with municipality workers started to “clean” the building, destroying all the equipment that was inside (including library, computer spaces, gym, bicycle workshop and kitchen) and to brick the entrances and windows.
Two people were detained after being injured by the police officers during a street protest in the neighborhood. At least three more people got beaten up by the police during sitting aiming to block the police cars way out of Fontinha. After a popular assembly, a decision was made to make a protest in front of the city hall building.
We need international support and we need to show that no where in the world police can act illegally against people, without any consequents of their actions.

One eviction, ten more occupations!


Pictures of the eviction:
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Solidarity demonstration in Lisbon for Escola

Lisboa está com a Es.Col.a 20.04.2012 - 10:16

hiphop against the eviction 20.04.2012 - 15:17

Against the eviction of Es.Col.A (Porto, PT) 20.04.2012 - 15:33
Please send protest mails against the eviction to:

Here the adress of mayor and city government (to write a letter or send a fax:

Câmara Municipal do Porto
Praça General Humberto Delgado
4049-001 Porto
Tel. 222 097 000
Fax 222 097 100

To the mayor and the city government of Porto,

As we have notice with dismay, the social center Es.col.a. was evicted, following your instruction by a massive police operation. You should know that the project and its activities are followed and supported with sympathy of many people outside Portugal.

The forcible eviction of the center destroyed and prevented meaningful activities, which guaranteed residents access to important social and cultural goods. Especially in a neighborhood where the city administration of Porto does almost nothing for the people. It would have been the least to let the collective of people, who are organizing these activities together with local residents, free to work in peace.

Instead, you have resorted to an unnecessary and brutal forced eviction and made the building unusable and destroyed the interior and utility objects.

We ask that you make the eviction reversed and repair the damage. Negotiate immediately with Es.col.a.-collective to reach a peaceful and socially just solutions!

What is the Es.Col.A ?

The selfmanaged neighbourhoud centre Es.Col.A in Porto, Portugal, is set up by a group of people, citizens that are dissatisfied with the excess of abandoned buildings and the inability of government to create effective responses to social exclusion and education. The main objective of the project is to create an independent, space, self-organized, free accesbile, non-discriminatory, non-commercial and open to diverse activities. The selfmanaged neighbourhoud centre Es.Col.A existed since April 2011 with daily activities taking place in an former abandonded shool building. The activities range from educational support to daily community dinners, through yoga, music, capoeira, dance, film, discussion, always together with and for the local population. For more information, the basic principals and operation of the project, see
Today, April 19, 15 police cars, with masked gunmen, evicted the participants of the project,destroying all material in the building, such as books, educational equipement, games. There were at least 3 persons detained and 5 persons injured during the eviction. After a year of growing bonds and synergy with the neighbour population of the project, Es.Col.A was violently and illegaly evicted, as the police did not identify themselves and did not present any official document to validate their action.