A new report says around 13,000 Greek people are homeless in the capital Athens and the number of the poor in the recession-hit country is on the rise.
The report by the charity organization, Praksis, which was published on Thursday says in the Greek capital of over four million, around 11,500 Greeks are living in abandoned buildings, while 1500 others live on the streets.
“Most of these 1,500 are unemployed or drug addicts left behind after the shutdown of rehabilitation centers for lack of funds,” Praksis Chairman Tzanetos Antypas was quoted by AFP as saying.
The charity says a new generation of the homeless has emerged in Greece, as the country grapples with growing unemployment and the deepening economic crisis.
While the drug addicts and mentally challenged people constitute the majority of the Greek homeless in the past, now a new generation of jobless people with middle or higher educational backgrounds has ended up living on the streets.
“We see people aged 40-55, mainly men who have lost their jobs or are unable to pay their rent or support their families,” Antypas said.
The EU and IMF have presented Greece with two rescue packages in return for specific austerity measures, which include the cutting of public sector salaries and pensions, increasing taxes and overhauling the pension system.
Caught in a fifth year of recession, over a million people are officially unemployed in Greece, a fifth of the country’s total workforce.
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