Automatically translated from Basque, translation may contain errors. More information here. Elhuyarren itzultzaile automatikoaren logoa

"The most beautiful thing would be to eliminate all motorized occupations"

  • Juan Larreta (Pamplona, 1968) began five years ago to denounce drivers who park their car in an improper place. Because of his multiple sclerosis, he has a parking card for people with disabilities. He has been trying for years to get a single card register in Navarre and to raise awareness. With his objectives he decides to abandon his activity and rest.
Argazkilaria: Zoe Martikorena

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When distances are short, that is, less than 200 meters, it works with sticks. Over longer distances, he uses a wheelchair. Juan Larreta has multiple sclerosis: “I always have to leave the car close, because I have a hard time going from one place to another.” It therefore has a parking card for disabled people. He has been broadcasting photographs of cars that park in an improper place for five years via social media (@Okupasmotoriza2 X).

This year he decided to suspend the activity because he has met his goal and needs a break: “From morning to night I published photos, it was my job.” Its main objective was to sensitize people and have a single record for cards in Navarra. It has met the two objectives: “It is nice what was achieved, but the most beautiful thing would be to eliminate all motorized occupations”.

In January 2019 he started denouncing drivers for parking the car in an improper place or for making improper use of the card. Although five years have passed, remember “very well” the first photo: “A friend sent me a picture of a poorly parked civil guard car in the supermarket.” Over the years he has known that when there is “an emergency” the police can use these parking spaces: “We will never know if it really was an emergency or not.”

10,000 photographs in five years

When he published the photograph, I didn’t expect the echo “so much”: “I started in a very naive way and without any expectation. I didn’t know if it was going to be a photo issue or I was going to open more.” Since then, in Navarre, over 10,000 photographs have been published: “It is shameful and shows the lack of sensitivity of the people”. The pictures he takes in the street are not the ones that have been searched, but the ones that are found: “Think about what we could go to search.” He doesn't work alone, he lives surrounded by 500 collaborators.

He finds it incredible that people use parking spaces like this: “I didn’t expect so many people, I don’t understand how our right is taken away.”

Some people who park or misuse the card in these places believe that “for a few minutes” nothing happens: “They think it’s a privilege, but it’s a necessity.”

“They think having a card is a privilege, but it’s a necessity.”

Single card registration in Navarra

Another objective was to achieve a single register of parking cards. Fortunately, they reached the target by the end of 2022. Until then, the municipalities managed the cards and distributed them in 272 localities in Navarre. Each city council had its own measure and regulations. Consequently, it was “difficult” to keep a “correct” record of the cards, and people used the “bad” card: “There are people who use the death card or when the person who needs it does not use the car”. The card can only be used if the person in need goes by car.

Now, just because there is a single registration, the owners have had to renew their card, so the deceased and expired cards are no longer valid. He has denounced that misuse of the card means “lack of empathy”: “My wife is not doubled to use the card when I am not and did not use my father’s when I did not need it.”

Another stage

Having not rested since she left her job, Larreta feels the need to rest. However, he has denounced another violation of rights that “flames”: “We still cannot access some places or take some paths because there are steps or steps”. The law obliges owners to crumble or make an entry accessible by opening a new business, but if the new business continues to function, it is not obliged to change law: “We cannot accept it, because years ago many people were isolated at home because cities and towns were not accessible.” It does not rule out denouncing it later, but for the moment it will rest.

A PART OF THE BODY?

"Two come to mind. For one thing, because heart is synonymous with love and generosity. I am very grateful for the solidarity of the people. On the other hand, arms. Before diagnosing the disease, they were very important to me, because I was a handball goalkeeper. Now they seem very important to give hugs."

 


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