Terra de Direitos
The case of Vila Sambaqui is a flagrant violation of the human right to housing and to the city, as well as aggression against and criminalization of human rights defenders. In 2007, the neighbourhood suffered a violent eviction ordered by the local government and carried out by the Municipal Guard, without compliance with legal requirements and extrapolating the authority prescribed to it by the constitution.
On August 14th 2007, Curitiba Municipal Guard, obeying orders given by the city’s mayor, the president of the Social Action Foundation and the City Urbanism Department, evicted by force the Força de um Poder Maior Residents’ Association, acting with unnecessary violence and arbitrariness.
The conflict began when inhabitants started building the temporary offices of the Residents’ Association on a plot of land measuring 220 m2, which they had already been taking care of. The property was the object of administrative proceedings within the appropriate government departments to authorize the formalization of a community space. However, in view of the unjustified delay and fearful that the process might be interrupted once more, the residents built temporary offices with wood, thus ensuring ownership and consolidating this fundamental instrument for community sociability, necessary for the articulation and strengthening of local peoples’ movements.
In view of the countless violations committed, as well as the repeated processes of repression and criminalization of social movements and human rights defenders, the National Union for Peoples’ Housing sought Terra de Direitos in order to take joint action. The Police Inquiry was only concluded in 2009, and to date the Paraná Public Prosecutor’s Office has not taken action against the agents of the Municipal Guard responsible for the offensives against human rights defenders.