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01 2016

Defend Esc, defend the city of commons and solidarity!

Esc Atelier

We find out with dismay that a provision of the management of the Municipality of Rome calls for the eviction of the self-managed atelier Esc. We also discover that dozens of other social centres and cultural associations are facing this measure. 

All this is a very serious mistake, that hits to the heart of the virtues that still survive in the city of Rome, that has always stood out for an unequalled proliferation of self management, mutualism, and independent cultural production. 

Esc has been active in the city of Rome for over 11 years. It is a crucial experience of radical democracy and new welfare, mutualism and solidarity. 

At Esc, migrants get free legal assistance and learn Italian; freelancers, informal, and precarious workers organize new tools of unionism and self-defence (Councils of Freelance and Precarious Workers): Esc is a place where people who don't have rights gain them. The Free Metropolitan University nurtures national and international critical thinking through seminars, publications, book launches; every year we hold a festival of independent publishers, L/ivre, that is crossed by thousands of people: Esc is an irreplaceable safeguard against the continuous cuts to public education and university, and to the cultural politics; a safeguard against the neoliberal twist of education and research.

Just like Esc, many self managed spaces and associations that, at a grass roots level, organize the welfare that the policies of austerity have destroyed, since the beginning of the great world depression.

A target for the commissioner management of the Capital, that is so “exuberant” that it ratifies privatization of kindergartens, suppresses supplementary pay and refunds for public employees, shuts down dog pounds; causes both small and wide scale employment crisis in the services and third sector. 

We ask, with determination, for the Commissioner Tronca to turn back, and to call for an immediate suspension of the eviction. What he should do, instead, is meet the many experiences of self management, the ethical and social riches of a city where fragmentation and solitude are growing to prevail!

We are committed to the defence of Esc, from the very first moment. In doing so, through this call, we foster to radically rethink the practices of government of public wealth. To make democracy of the commons prevail, means to recognise the many experiences that, de facto, nurture solidarity networks, new mutualism, free cultural production.

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