Home World The exact date over-tourism protests to erupt in Spanish holiday hotspot again

The exact date over-tourism protests to erupt in Spanish holiday hotspot again

The date for the next protest for the Balearic Islands has been announced – with all four islands of Majorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera expected to take part – and is intended to focus on the housing crisis, brought about partly through tourism. 

At a meeting on Thursday, the Menys Turisme, Més Vida platform – “less tourism, more life” – agreed to the staging of what it intends to be a large protest, involving all four Balearic Islands, during the peak holiday season on July 21, according to the Majorca Daily Bulletin. 

Margalida Ramis of the environmentalists Balearic Group of Ornithology and Nature Defense (GOB), a component of the group, said on Thursday evening that unions and the working class linked to the tourism sector will also participate. This will add more to the numbers – of around 15,000 people – that took part in the Palma demonstration in May. 

The focus of the planned protest will be the housing crisis and its consequences for the archipelago which has ensued partly due to tourism. 

“It is a very broad issue that affects different sectors, but overcrowding affects us all.” Ramis also stressed the need for “social justice.”

At the end of May, a small Majorcan neighbourhood organisation, the Banc de Temps de Sencelles, brought together 10,000 protestors in Palma to protest against overcrowding on the Balearic Islands and to demand access to “decent housing”. They proposed that a minimum of five years’ residence on the islands become a prerequisite for obtaining it.

“This land must be a place where our sons and daughters can grow up in safety and dignity, with controlled tourism that does not determine our whole life”, states the manifesto, which outlines seven measures to address overcrowding and ensure affordable housing for residents. 

These include declaring a “housing emergency” in the archipelago to force urgent measures and recognising the islands as a “tense zone” in order to regulate rental prices. Additionally, the Banc de Temps advocates for the “rehousing” of evicted individuals who cannot pay their rent, as stipulated by current legislation.

While tourism accounts for approximately 45 percent of the islands’ revenue, the manifesto urges a more “controlled” tourism strategy that “does not determine our whole way of life”. The group clarified that they were not opposed to tourism, but emphasised: “We have to rethink the tourism model.”

While it is full-steam ahead for this large protest, there is also the intention to maintain “a constant trickle of actions” until the end of the summer. 


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