A host of social organizations organized protests in Buenos Aires and cities located in Argentina's interior regions on Thursday in response to rising food deprivation.
Demonstrators requested that the government of Argentine President Mauricio Macri declare a state of food emergency, which would activate the country's Social Emergency Law.
Protests began early Thursday morning as members from the Confederation of Popular Economy Workers, CTEP, the Class and Combative Current, CCC, and Neighborhoods Stand Up converged on Buenos Aires’ landmark obelisk situated in front of Congress, Diario Registrado reported.
Once there, demonstrators set up roughly a thousand kitchen pots to prepare hot meals for those in need. They also protested child malnutrition resulting from deficient meals served at public schools.
Data obtained by the People's First Census on Street Situation revealed that a total number of 4,394 people live on the streets of Buenos Aires, a place ironically referred to as the “Paris of South America.” The figure is four times higher than official government reports.
“Today, layoffs and poverty are growing in Argentina,” said Daniel Menendez, general secretary of Neighborhoods Stand Up.
He confirmed that social movements are advocating for a food emergency project that will be presented to Congress next week. The objective will be to bring greater awareness and offer viable solutions for children and adolescents who suffer from malnutrition.
In turn, Macri's administration, notwithstanding austerity measures which have led to more than 201,000 workers in the public and private sector losing their jobs since last year, has said that it must review economic policies that have resulted in milk consumption being at its lowest since the 2001 crisis.