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82 People Have Frozen to Death So Far This Winter, Hungarian Social Forum Reports

Ábrahám Vass 2022.01.15.

Some 82 people froze to death between early October and early January, Hungarian Social Forum (MSZF) reported on Friday. The majority still die in unheated homes.

According to the human rights forum, the majority of the victims died in unheated homes, mostly in flats, and only a few in public areas. Many died while being transported to hospital or after being admitted.

This number certainly marks an increase in comparison to the same period last year, MSZF writes, arguing that the hike in the number of victims isn’t due to the colder winter but rather the social safety net that fails to appropriately protect elderly, sick, and lonely people.

Earlier, the Forum also criticized the PMO head, claiming that Gergely Gulyás had been failing to answer their questions about the government’s protective measures in this matter since 2018.

Meanwhile, 24.hu reported that the government has recently reintroduced the so-called Code Red in the Northern- and Southern Great Plain from 8pm on Thursday until 8pm on Monday (for now), meaning that social institutions must accept people who are homeless or in distress. The provision is ordered due to forecasts predicting the temperature to drop below minus 10 degrees overnight for the next few days.

State Secretary for Social Affairs, Attila Fülöp, said that homeless care units’ utilization rate currently stands at 76% nation-wide and 68% in the capital, asking everyone to make use of the service if needed.

featured image illustration via Zsolt Czeglédi/MTI