On Tuesday, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo announced that the city will open two new refugee camps by the end of the year. One camp will care for single men in Paris’ 18th arrondissement (administrative district). The other camp, responsible for single women and families, will be located outside the city.
The mens camp, which is set to open in mid-October, will provide 400 beds, with 200 more expected to arrive in the coming months. The second camp will have 350 beds and will open at the end of the year. Both camps will be managed by French immigration workers with help from Emmaüs Solidarité. According to Hidalgo, these are the first camps to be built in such a dense urban area.
The city of Paris has already welcomed over 15,000 migrants and refugees since last year, though they are currently confined to makeshift camps that Hidalgo described as “unhealthy and dangerous, and the migrants are living under shameful conditions.”
On Tuesday, Housing Minister Emmanuelle Cosse said in a statement that offering shelter to those in danger represents an “unconditional duty for a large state bound by law.” He went on to say that “no one should have to deal with unsanitary camps.”