Judge blames prison mgt. for riots; Civil Registry to prioritize ‘urgent’ cases; Tourist rental regulatons are planned; Poor families can’t afford school bus charge
Hola, Todos –
Carrera de mascotas y dueños (Pets and owners race) – The RUNCAN Trail Running Canino <An example of Spanlish in Cuenca> race will be held el 12/6 for dogs and their owners. The Pet Home Hotel is organizing this event which will be in Llacao and also have adoptions, sports, and a live show. There will be 3 categories: 2.5 km. for the Puppy category, 5 km. for Prime Pet, and 7.5 km. for Morlaquitos. <My dog is probably good for at least the Puppy category. Her owner can’t run that far. Too bad there’s not a category for 2.5 blocks.> Register by 31/5 on the WhatsApp number 095 893 4352.
Max Bernal from the Clínica Veterinaria Solidaria said that proceeds would benefit animal rescue centers including the Protectora de Animales foundation (ARCA), the Movimiento Conciencia Animal Cuenca (M.C.A.), Salvando Vidas, y Comunidad Canina. Food donated by different businesses will be given to these organizations. The delivery will be made week after the RUNCAN Trail Running Canino at a public event in the Plaza del Otorongo. The entry fee is $10.00 and participants will receive a kit.
Registro Civil pronto regulará sus servicios (Civil Registry will soon regulate its services) – It’s evident in social networks that people are fed up with trying to get appointments at the Registro Civil for cédulas and/or passports. Lizbeth Berrezueta, coordinadora zonal 6 of the Registro Civil said that if you have an urgent need for those documents, you can support your case together with your pertinent responses at firstname.lastname@example.org or or en supervisión (in person>?) at all the agencies of the Registro in order to help you to meet your needs and to be able to receive the service. <Did I understand that correctly? That in order to get a faster appointment to get a cédula or passport, you have to demonstrate the urgency of your case, and you can go to the office to do that? And this is the same office that doesn’t have appointments to get the document you really need?> A team at the Registro Civil has been assigned to verify the information you present since in some cases there have been falsifications. The verification takes a maximum of 48 hours. <And why has this special team not been assigned to issuing cédulas and passports instead of verifying your urgent need for those documents? Blame the Chinese for inventing bureaucracy – worst invention ever. Maybe it ties with gunpowder – also invented by the Chinese.>
There is preferential service at the Registro Civil with a special line for seniors over 65, children under 3, and people with disabilities, groups who don’t need to make an appointment. <Does a desperate need for anger management therapy count as a disability?> There are also support modules for people unfamiliar with technology or without internet access. Berrezueta lamented that there was a world wide crisis created in the supply chain due to restrictions in manufacturing due to the pandemic. This led to a scarcity of electronic chips and associated supplies which affected production of cédulas and passports. She was optimistic that in the upcoming weeks, delivery of supplies would gradually pick up with a consequent normalization of appointments.
Acciones inmediatas (Immediate actions) – Berrezueta reported that the Instituto Geográfico Militar (IGM) which is in charge of providing materials for issuing cédulas and passports has tightened its processes to fulfil the different requirements. There will also be partial delivery which will gradually increase so there will be sufficient stock to meet the demand. She said that hours have been added on sábados and the number of daily appointments has been increased. The validity of cédulas and certificates of identity has been extended to 30/6/2022. Service for other documents such as birth, death, and marriage certificates; electronic signatures; and issuance of certificates and registration documents are proceeding normally.
Justicia cuestiona manejo de las cárceles (Justice questions prison management) – Questions from Pablo Ramírez of the Servicio Nacional de Atención Integral a Personas Adultas Privadas de la Libertad y a Adolescentes Infractores (SNAI) caused a reaction from the Corte de Justicia de Azuay. According to SNAI, to date in 2022, by means of habeas corpus, the judicial system accepted the transfer of 244 inmates at the Turi prison to other prisons in the country. This included 124 who were sent to the prison in Santo Domingo which is 75% overcrowded and where there were 44 deaths in a riot on lunes.
Alexandra Vallejo, president of the Corte de Justicia de Azuay rejected the idea that the jail crisis is the responsibility of judges. She said the right of habeas corpus is guaranteed in Article 89 of the Constitution with inmates seeking their rights to serve their sentence without fearing for their lives or sanity, and to not be treated in an inhumane manner. She said the judiciary does not dictate the laws, guarantee security within prisons, nor control the ingress of weapons; and that SNAI is solely responsible for the prison crisis. Between 1/4 and 9/5, the court heard 123 actions from prisoners seeking to guarantee their rights, and transferred 45 prisoners to 9 other prisons which in no way made the court responsible for the massacres.
On martes, Mayor Palacios held a security meeting with the public where the request to not transfer more inmates from other cities to Cuenca was ratified. The attendees also asked that Pres. Lasso fulfil his campaign promise that the prison in Turi be regional only. A resolution to hold a march for security and peace on el 19/5 was also passed along with a demand to return the air police service to Cuenca. Another request was that the Gobierno Nacional assign more police to Cuenca, and authorize the use of non-lethal arms by the Guardia Ciudadana de Cuenca.
En Victoria del Portete cobran el transporte escolar (In Victoria del Portete they charge for school transport) – At the start of the year when kids returned to in-person classes at the Unidad Educativa del Milenio in the Victoria del Portete parish, kids and families celebrated. This large school was built on the flattest part of the parish. Rural schools were closed as part of the educational plan, and school buses were supposed to be free since many kids lived long distances from the school. Buses were free for the 1st two weeks, but since last week, there has been a fee of $3/wk. per child, and then the transportistas asked for a fare hike which was rejected by the parents. And the bus service was suspended on los 9 & 10/5.
Many parents are economically unable to pay these fares, especially if they have several children in school, and already have trouble buying food. At a recent meeting, the fare was set at $5/wk. for this month since the previous fare wasn’t economically feasible for the drivers. The Education District is currently working on a contract for school bus services. Meanwhile, some of the kids are walking 3 hours to get to school.
Socializan reglamentos de alquiler de inmuebles par uso turístico (Socialization of property rental regulations for tourism use) – Tourists have the option of renting apartments, houses, or rooms in private homes if they don’t opt for a hotel. Niels Olsen, ministro de Turismo, issued a letter to publicize the draft of the “Reglamento de Alojamiento termporal en Inmuebles Habitacionales para Uso Turístico” (Regulation of Temporary Lodging in Residential Properties for Tourist Use). For Olsen, it’s important that hosts offering lodging comply with minimum standards for service and safety. These are already required by Airbnb and similar platforms.
The Ministro de Turismo has a register which is free and easy to join. Juan Pablo Vanegas, president of the Cámara de Turismo de Azuay, has said that asociations and tourism representatives are in support of ideas in this draft. He said that lodging services should be offered in equal conditions. Hotels face unfair competition from people renting out property with lower operating costs. Hotels pay taxes, pay for commercial services, and employee salaries. Security, control, and regulation of hotels, hostals and hosterías generate costs for quality service to clients.
And that´s all for today so Hasta ? –