Kraakhandleiding/Squatting manual

Download hier de kraakhandleiding                                                                                     Download the squatting manual                                                                                            descargar el manual de ocupacion

Places in the text that were HTML links have been surrounded
with brackets, like [[this]].

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NOTE 1. This guide has been translated from Dutch. One problem is that
the Dutch word “woning” is difficult to translate to English;
the closest word is “dwelling” but nobody uses that
word anymore! Throughout the text I use “house”, “floor”,
“place”, “space”, or “building” depending on the specific context.
Please understand that, although most things that are squatted
are houses or floors, it is also possible to squat other types of
space, such as business spaces.

NOTE 2. In Amsterdam there are two types of local council. There
is the single municipal council (in Dutch, the Gemeente Amsterdam) which
deals with issues that concern the whole city, see
http://www.amsterdam.nl/gemeente/. Then there
are the 15 smaller city district councils (in Dutch, the Stadsdelen)
that have responsibility for a particular part of Amsterdam,
see http://www.amsterdam.nl/gemeente/stadsdelen. In essence,
thus, the Gemeente and the Stadsdelen share the responsibility
of governing Amsterdam.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Guidebook for Squatters
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The new Short GUidebook for Squatters can be downloaded [[here]] as PDF (4,99MB!)

A “Pijp tot over de pont” production
A “quartier latin” publication

Short Guidebook for Squatters 2005

Introduction

The new Short Guidebook for Squatters is finally ready. In this
guidebook we have tried to fit in as much information as
possible about how to squat. With the information in this
guidebook it is in principle possible to satisfy your own
housing need within a few weeks. Given that this guidebook
was designed to be short it has not been possible to
go into the same amount of detail about every topic, and
not all details about squatting are discussed. For
more information about squatting we refer you to one
of the kraakspreekuren (squatters advice hours). You can also
find lots of information about squatting on [[http://www.squat.net]].

We have tried to keep this guidebook short so that it has the form
of an inexpensive, small booklet that can be easily spread around
and distributed. It is expected that, because of the worsensing economic
position of many people and the hollowing-out and breaking-down of the
social renting system, more and more people will be forced to resort
to squatting. Subsidies to help people pay their rent
are being cut back and the rent levels of many social renting
appartments is going to be deregulated. More and more people
have debts and the [[institutions which help people manage their
debts]] can no longer cope. With this guidebook we want to give
more clarity about the big myths that circulate about squatting.
We want to show that squatting, in times of housing shortage,
is a good option.

We have chosen to supply the [[address list]] as a separate attachment
so that it can be regularly updated. To make life a little easier we
have placed a “basic checklist” on the back of the address list. If
you have received this guidebook via a kraakspreekuur (in English: squatting
advice hour) then this list will probably be suppled with it, otherwise
ask for it. If you’ve obtained this guidebook from elsewhere then
you can find the addresslist [[here]], or from the kraakspreekuur.

We advise that you squat with the help of a kraakspreekuur. The
kraakspreekuur has often years of experience with squatting
and knows how the neighbourhood in which you want to squat
reacts to squatting and squatters. More about the kraakspreekuur follows.

This guidebook focuses on the situation in Amsterdam.
If you want to squat somewhere else then look [[here]] or on
[[http://www.squat.net]] for the nearest-by kraakspreekuur in
your area. They are better informed about the local rules
and arrangements.

CHAPTER 1: SQUATTING

What is squatting?

Squatting is when you unlawfully go and live in
an empty building. The owner has not given
you any permission to go and live there, you are
there thus without “right or title”. That doesn’t
mean to say that it is forbidden or
punishable. In the Netherlands there has already
for a long time been laws concerning squatting.
The law has been adapted several times, but it
has nevertheless always remained legally
possible to squat. Squatters have, because
of these laws, various rights, such as the right
to house-peace. Squatting happens (certainly
in Amsterdam) mostly in co-operation with a
kraakspreekuur. Squatting is a direct consequence
of, and a direct individual solution to, (the)
housing shortage and at the same time also
a means to exert political pressure.

Squatting, step-by-step

Good, you want to squat, or research the possibilities
to squat. What can you expect?, who can help you?, how
long can you stay if you squat?, is it dangerous?,
how much does it cost?, how long does something have
to stand empty before you may squat it?, and more
questions of this type, will be questions that spring
to mind. With this guidebook we want to (as far as possible)
give you step-by-step answers to these questions and
also to explain how squatting hangs together as a whole.
With squatting it is often true that, the more information
you have about the place you wish to squat, the greater
you are able to estimate what your chances are. Don’t
let yourself be scared off by the effort that you have
to put in, or the possible risks that squatting can bring
with it. There are very many people in Amsterdam that
have already lived for a long time (and continue to live)
in a squatted place and some have even received a rental contract.

The kraakspreekuur (In English: squatting advice hour):

You can go to the kraakspreekuur (KSU; see address list)
for general information about squatting and for direct
help with the preparation of your own squat. The KSU
explains how you can find out as much information as possible
about the place that you have your eye on. The people that
work at the KSU are often well-informed about what is going
on in a particular neighbourhood and possibly also have information
about the place you’re are looking at. They maintain a file/list of
houses that can sometimes give information about how long the house has
stood empty. They keep a record of who has been busy with which
place, and when, and their database may also contain
other information about the place. The people from the KSU
often already have several years experience with squatting and
are often able to estimate well the legal and practical feasibility
of the planned squat. They can also help you to find a lawyer.

The KSU is also there to offer practical help. The KSU gives
advice about the [[locks]] that you must acquire and has a bakfiets
(a bicyle with a big carrying box on the front) with which you can transport
the “squatting set” (tabel, bed and chair.) It is mostly
the KSU that takes care of breaking open the house (where possible
without damage). In addition, there is someone from the KSU
that will speak with the police if the police come along to
determine whether the place was empty. (If necessary the KSU
will itself call the police to ensure that they come.) The
KSU helps (where necessary) with the installation of a new
lock and the making of any repairs necessary to make the door
again closeable.

You can also ask the KSU for help after the squat. Reactions
can come from various different places after you have squatted a
place. The owner of the place often reacts. The police
might also come along to investigate the situation. It is often
also the case that neighbours and people living in the neighbourhood
around you have something to say about your squat. Thus, there are a
number of different interest groups that you will come across. The
KSU can support you and/or advise how you should deal with all
these reactions.

The KSU is not a service which simply arranges living
space for you and you should not go along to the KSU
if you instantly need a place to live. It costs time
to find empty places and to gather all the information
you need to be able to squat a place. You will have to
find the empty places yourself, and you will have to find
out most of the information about the place yourself. The
KSU has mainly an advisory role in this research phase.

The KSU is run by a group of volunteers. THe KSU works on
the basis of idealism and solidarity. Actions and tools are
financed from [[voluntary contributions]].

What can you expect when you squat?

Estimating the chances or ‘dangers’ of squatting a place is fairly
troublesome, and certainly if you try to do this alone. Roughly speaking you can
say that, if you squat something that has already stood empty longer than a year, the
owner must first get all his affairs in order before he can get an eviction order
from the court. If he has all his affairs in order and can demonstrate that he
needs the space you have squatted, his lawyer must first issue a legal summons (which
requests you to come to court.) You are usually about a month further before this all leads to an
implementable eviction order. In most cases can you can tell further in advance
when/if a court summons is coming. There are of course exceptions to this; sometimes
the whole process takes several years, sometimes it all gets done extra fast. And
there are naturally many potential problems that you can encounter which can make
the story of your squat develop differently. Happily not every squat leads
to a (quick) eviction. Indeed, it occasionally happens that squats get legalised,
and many squats are, over time, voluntarily left by their inhabitants because (for example)
the squatters agree with the plans that have been developed for the place.
But let’s begin at the beginning: the finding of a space to squat.

What type of place are you looking for?

Before you begin with squatting, one of the first things that you must determine
is how you want to live. Do you want to live alone, or do you prefer to
live together with more people? If you want to live alone, or with just the
two of you, it is best to go looking for an empty floor (e.g. “begane grond”,
“1-hoog”, “2-hoog” etc.) If you want to
live with more people, consider what type of space you are looking for.
How big is the group? Are you looking for a place with a number
of empty floors where you can live with a number of people, or are
you looking for a large building where you can live and work with
a group of people? If you choose to go and live with more people then it’s
best if you find people that you already know a little bit. If
you are looking for large spaces or buildings then it’s best to look in the
Centre or the Vondelpark-Concertgebouwbuurt (VPC; in English, this is the
Vondelpark-Concertbuilding neighbourhood). If you’re looking
for floors then it’s good to go looking in the South, the West or
the East. If looking for empty living space then it’s best to look
in the neighbourhoods where large-scare city renewal projects are on the
agenda. In the centre and around the train stations you can also
occasionally come across empty office buildings that are suitable
for groups. See the [[addresslist]] for the different kraakspreekuren.

Tips when searching:

Once you know how you want to live you can go looking for something
appropriate. You can ask your family, friends and acquantainces
whether they know of something that has already stood empty
for some time, and otherwise must you go looking yourself. Finding
empty places is not easy. What it comes down to is that
you select a neighbourhood where you want to live, and then go and
cycle or walk around that neighbourhood to try and spot
empty places. Take a pen and paper with you and clearly
write down everything that catches your attention. You can also
read (neighbourhood) newspapers and newsletters and pay attention
to building projects that have had a difficult birth or which the
neighbourhood is resisting against. The people at the wijkcentrum (in English: neighbourhood centre)
often also have information about where building- and demolition-
projects are scheduled to take place. If you think you have found a number
of empty spaces, check every day to see if it is really empty. Do this at different
times (during the day/night) so that you get a better idea if it is really empty. Press the
doorbell at different times:- then you know if the doorbell works and it might happen
that somebody answers the door! If the place has an entrance door that is not shared with other
neighbours then you can put a match between the door and the doorframe. If you detect later
that this match has fallen out, then the chance exists that the door has been open. (Try it
again!) Once you are sure that the place is empty you can go and do further research.

CHAPTER 2: RESEARCH

Checklist:

You still have to research many things before you go squatting. There is a [[checklist]] included
to make this easier. Go through this and find all the things that could be relevant
to your intended squat. Knowledge is power: that applies also to squatting. Write a date
next to any information you find; then, if your squat gets postponed, you can see
(in the future) how old your information is. You can bring your checklist to the kraakspreekuur
if you decide not to go further with a place, so that other people can make use of your
research.

A word of caution!

When you go and research a place that
you want to squat, you should of course
not tell this to everybody. Not everybody
has a positive attitude towards squatting.
If/when you go to (official) institutions
to request information, don’t tell them
that you want to squat the place,
because it can happen that the person
with which you’ve spoken tells the
owner. The same is true for neighbours.
If the (official) institutions
don’t want to give you the required
information then you can appeal to
the Wet Openbaarheid van Bestuur
(Law on Openness of Governance.) This
law arranges that citizens can view
government documents, permits and
decisions. It is not always possible
to copy such documents, or the
cost can be very high, so always take
a pen and paper with you. If it
is at all possible then you really should
photocopy essential documents that
(for example) discuss the length of
time that the place has stood empty.

How long has something stood empty?

It is important to find out how long
a place has stood empty. According
to the law, a place should have stood
empty for at least one year before
you may squat it. This is specified
in the wetboek van strafrecht
(lawbook of criminal law) under
Artikel 429sexies. If the place
has not stood empty for a year when
you squat, then the chance is high
that you will be evicted on the
basis of criminal law.

[A rough English translation of the exact text follows. Please
consult the original Dutch legal articles for an authoritative
reference.]

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Art. 429sexies

Lawbook of criminal law

Third book

Title 2. Violations concerning the public order

He that has unlawfully taken a house or a building into use (in which
the use by the right-holder was ended no more than twelve months
preceeding the unlawful taking into use) and – when confronted with
a demand by (or flowing from) the right-holder – fails to promptly
leave the space, is punished with a sentence of at most four months or a fine
of the third category.

2. The same punishment is applied to he who, staying/dwelling in an unlawfully
taken into use house or building (the use of which was ended by the right-holder
user no more than twelve months preceeding the unlawful taking into), does
not promptly leave when confronted by such a demand by (or flowing from)
the right-holder.

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Despite the fact that (in such cases)
the police evicts on the basis of criminal
law, there rarely follows a criminal
prosection.

There are different ways to find out how
long something has stood empty. You
must first find out if something
is actually EMPTY! Check daily
that nothing is happing in the place.
Look in the letterbox. You can
ask the neighbours about the length
of time that the place has stood
empty. However, you can never be
completely sure that this information
is reliable and whether the
neighbours have the best intentions
towards you. When asking how long
a place has stood empty, it’s
generally not wise to mention
that you want to squat it. Many
people think that squatting always
brings trouble with it. They have
this attitude because the media
only focuses on squatters if
a public order disturbance
threatens, and that is thus
what people hear on the radio,
see on TV and read in the newspapers.
So, when you knock/call at the neighbours,
you can use an excuse and (for example)
ask where the previous residents
are (which were friends/acquaintances
of yours) and that you are looking for
them. The kraakspreekuur has (as
mentioned earlier) a file of addresses
in which information can be found
about the (potentially)
empty places they know about. Maybe
the kraakspreekuur has other information
about the place you are looking at.
You can also call NUON (the electricity
company) to ask whether there is an
electricity connection in the place
(for example because you’re going to rent
the place and you want to put the account
on your name…), or (where relevant)
the estate agent/broker selling the house.
If you call someone like the broker,
you must come up with a good excuse
if you are to avoid creating suspicion!
Ask the kraakspreekuur for advice about
this. Check regularly whether the
match is still there between the door
and the doorframe.

Reason for emptiness:

It is important to find out why the place is standing empty. You should (for example) check
if the house is for sale, or to rent, and for how long. Why did the last users of the space
leave? Are there plans for the place, and – where applicable – why have those plans not
yet been executed? Activities which involve the genuine intention to bring the place back
into use are also considered “use” by Art. 429 sexies. In such a case the people in question
must genuinely be busy with the process of bringing the place back into use. A delayed
building process or the declared intention to sell are not active use, and can be
fought at court.

Dienst Wonen
(In English: “Housing Service”)

The [[Dienst Wonen]] (see [[address list]]) of the Amsterdam municipal council
provides housing services to citizens, co-ordinates city renewal and formulates the
Amsterdam housing policy. The division “Vergunningen en Handhaving” (in English: permits and
enforcement) supervises that low-rent houses end up with those people who are entitled
to them. Houses with a rent under the huursubsidiegrens (In English: rent subsidy threshhold) that
fall empty because of people moving house or because of (for example) renovation must
be reported empty to Dienst Wonen. You can thus try to get information from them regarding
how long the place has been empty. Ring them up to do this, with an excuse. Ask whether
the house has been reported empty, when, and why. If the house has not been reported
empty, then ask if there has been a housing permit issued, and since when.

Kadaster:

It is important to know who the owner is before you go squatting. This is pretty simple
to find out, at the [[Kadaster]] (see [[address list]].) The Kadaster is a source of information
for those people that want to know more about the history of properties. The Kadaster has
been registering (since 1832) details about properties and all changes to the state of properties.
In this way the Kadaster records, for example, the name of the owner and the price that
was paid for the property.

Purchase- and mortgage deeds (‘koopakte’ and ‘hypotheekakte’ respectively in Dutch) have to be
registered at the Kadaster
in order to be legally valid. In the purchase deed you can find who has sold what to who, and for what price.
There is also reported, where applicable, various business rights that are connected with property,
such as the right to usufruct and the right of way. The mortgage deed reports by who, and for
what amount of money, a mortgage has been established, on which property that applies to, and
who has granted the mortgage.

At the Kadaster you can also search on the basis of other details, for example on the basis
of a name. In this way you can also research the other properties of your future owner.

If you go to the Kadaster, it’s best to ask for the purchase deed or the mortgage deed. If
you only ask for the owner of the property you’ll be given a print-out of the current
Kadastral situation for the property, upon which stands little (or no) extra information. The
purchase deed or the mortgage deed gives you much more information, for the same price.

At the Kadaster it costs around 6 euro per requested document.

Owners:

Once you know who the owner is of the place you wish to squat, it’s sensible to first
discuss this information with your KSU. Not all owners are equally friendly.
Stronger still, some owners can be downright dangerous. You must be well prepared
if you’re going to squat something belonging to such a figure. The different KSUs
have built up throughout the years a lot of experience with disreputable owners
and many of them will be already known by the KSU. If you squat something
belonging to a housing association/corporation, a bank, an insurance company
or a big business, then you needn’t worry about gangs of thugs being sent by the owner.

Speculatie Onderzoek Kollektief: SPOK
(In English: Speculation research collective)

The KSUs have however not all information. For a more complete overview you can go to the
SPOK (see [[address list]].) Here they have an archive where they store all kinds of information
about owners. From speculators and project developers, to true criminals and their
gangs of thugs. Despite this mass of information it’s true that, even when there is
nothing known about an owner, the owner can in a very real sense be dangerous.
A dangerous owner only becomes known as dangerous once he has sent in his first
gang of thugs. At the same time, most owners do not turn out to be dangerous.
The use of SPOK is free.

Permits

Before you go squatting you should research whether there are plans for the place
or whether there have been permits for the building requested or issued. There are various
different ways to research whether permits have been requested or issued.

De Commissie voor Welstand en Monumenten
(In English: The commission for urban aesthetics and monuments)

This is an independent commission that advises the mayor, the portfolio holders
around him, and the daily governing bodies of the city district councils whenever a building
permit or a monument permit is requested. The [[Commissie voor Welstand en Monumenten]]
examines the aesthetic and monumental aspects of the request, as dictated
by various laws related to housing, monuments and building regulations. The commission
gives, at the end of the day, just advice. This advice is published on the
website of the commission. Go to ‘[[welstandsadvies]]’, once you’re there you can simply
search for particular addresses. This is safer than making contact with the building
and housing supervisory service BWT (see below.)

Stadsdelen
(In English: city district councils)

With some city district councils you can check their websites to see whether a permit has been requested
and/or issued (see the [[address list]].) If the district council where you want to squat does publish
such information, you can simply search using the search engine on their website (e.g. by typing
in the address.)

Bouw- en Woningtoezicht (BWT)
(In English: Building and housing supervisory service)

If the city district council does not publish the permits on her website, then you can go
to the [[BWT]] (see [[address list]].) Every city district council has a BWT division. Be careful when
you ask for information from the BWT! It has happened occasionally in the past that the BWT
has informed an owner, after a vague telephonecall for example, that his property might shortly
be squatted. You should preferably only speak to the BTW at the very last moment,
or after you have squatted. The squatting hour can advise you about this. If there is a permit,
or a permit has been requested, it’s important to look at what the plans are and when the
permit was requested and/or issued.

The Woningwet (a housing law) prescribes that the mayor and his portfolio holders
should organise the building- and housing- supervisory service. The tasks that
should be carried out by this service are also described in this law. In particular,
the following is recorded: the researching of the state of social housing
in the council’s geographic area, and the exercise of supervision within the
council area regarding the fulfilment of the housing law.

What it comes down to is that the BWT examines requests for building permits and splitting
permits (required before the floors of a house can be sold individually) and
checks whether these requests
are compatible with the bouwbesluit (In English: “building decree”), the bestemmingsplannen
(plans describing the specific functions designated to specific buildings) and the policy of
the city council.
If these requests are indeed compatible, then the BWT issues the permit. The BTW has the
task to monitor the exection of the building project in question. The BTW also has the task
of monitoring the (structural) safety of existing buildings. Where the necessary
maintenance has not been carried out and/or the building has (structural) defects, the BTW
can warn the owner, declare the place uninhabitable or even seize the place. Declaring
a place uninhabitable, or seizing the place, does not happen very option, but it
does happen.

Kamer van Koophandel (KvK)
(In English: Chambers of Commerce)

If the place that you want to squat is a business space, you can often find information at the
KvK (see address list.) There are also small businesses registered at housing addresses, so you
can also go to the KvK when researching a living space. The KvK is (for a very long time already)
an advice body for trade and industry and since 1920 it has maintained/controlled the
trade register. They are also responsible for the execution of a number of laws, such as the
establishment law (vestigingswet) and the laws controlling the closing times of shops.
In the trade register you can find out whether a business is registered at a particular
address. You are often also able to find out the date when the last business there departed
and this gives a good indication of how long the place has stood empty. If your future
owner is a business, or has a business, you can also often find lots of information at
the KvK about what your owner does (apart from leaving the place you are researching
empty!) Does the owner have other businesses? What do they do? At the KvK you can also
find charters and year reports. This type of information can be important when trying
to predict how things will turn out.

There are various different ways to find out information from the KvK. Basic information (about whether
a business is registered in the place you are researching or at the address of the owner) can be obtained
freely from the trade register on the website of the KvK. You know then, in any case, whether it makes
sense to go in person to the KvK. The best and cheapest way to find out lots of information is to go
to the KvK in person and to go and sit behind one of their computers. Once you’re there, you can
search on the basis of postcodes and business names. If you’re researching a business space you can begin
with searching on the basis of postcode. You can then do some fishing to find out if there are businesses
registered there, of have been registered there. You can see the date when the last business departed,
you can see if there is a connection between the owner and the business that was established there,
and what type of business it was. You can find out who actually owns businesses. With their computers
you can (for only a fixed price) discover entire networks and a whole tangle of businesses. In that case
printing is not an option, so take a pen and paper with you. It works a bit differently when you
request certain records. Then you pay per record and the KvK employees must find it for you,
which is certainly not their hobby! Mostly you’ll end up eventually paying more for less information.
You can also find out information from the KvK via the internet ([[www.kvk.nl]]). If you want more
information over the business or the owner(s) you can also find information on the KvK website. In that
case you have to become a member, and you pay per requested document. You must also in that case
give your details because of the payment mechanism. We thus advise you to go to the KvK in person.

CHAPTER 3: PREPARATIONS

The place is, in principle, squattable:

Once you have gathered as much information as possible, and
the place that you want to squat is squattable, then come
the practical preparations for the squat. There are a number
of based-in-law criteria that you must satisfy to ensure that
you have “house peace” (huisvrede, a legal term) after the
squat. You must be able to demonstrate that you live there
or in any case that you have the intention to live there. The
minimal requirement for this is a table, a bed, and a chair,
the so-called “squat set.” You must also be able to close off
access to the place, with your own lock. During the first
week you must ensure that there is always somebody in your
squat, because it is during the first week that you can expect
the most reactions. Ensure, before you go squatting, that
you have a lawyer that wants to, and can do, your case.

The meeting point:

It is useful to have a group of people with you when you actually
squat the house. There is thus a meeting point needed. From that
point you go with the group to the place you want to squat. Ask the
squatting hour where the nearest squat is and as soon as you
know the date and time of your squat, go along to ask if you
can use their squat as the meeting point. Once you
know where (and when) you are going to meet you can go and mobilise
your friends. If you squat with the help of the squatting
hour they will take a part of the responsibility for mobilising
people.

The lock:

Before you squat a place you must find out what type of lock
is being used on the place. Once you know this you can (with
the squatting hour) better estimate how much damage will be
caused when the door is broken open, and it also tells you
what type of lock you have to buy to put back in the door. If
you buy a lock which is of the same type as the lock that
is already in the door, then (in general) it is possible
to swap the locks without all too much trouble. Pay especially
goed attention to the external characteristics of the lock,
it is mostly possible from its appearance to establish what
type of lock it is. Also pay good attention to
whether the door has a “break strip”. If you squat with the
squatting hour then they will arrange a team of people
to break the door, and these people will look at the
door so that they can break the door open as quickly
as possible. Arrange with the squatting hour who is
going to take care of the locks; if the squatting hour
does that, then you’ll still have to pay for the
cost of the lock(s).

Recognising locks:

So that you can easily recognise the lock, we give [[here]] an overview
of the four most commonly used locks. If you’re going to look at the
door then pay good attention to how many locks there are in the door,
what types of lock they are, and where they sit in the door. If there
are multiple locks then you can push against the door to see if they
are all actually in use. This doesn’t always work. Look whether there
have been break strips installed, write all this information down,
and go with it to the squatting hour.

——————————————————————-

1/ The first type of lock is known as an “oplegslot” or
“nachtslot” (in English, night lock.) The cylinder (Which
is about as big as a 1-euro coin or a 2-euro coin) sticks
from the inner side of the door towards the outside. Sometimes
there’s a finishing plate around it that has been mounted on the door.
Between the cylinder and the plate is usually a few millimetres space.

2/ The next is known as a “losse” (in English, loose) or
“staart” (in English, tail) cylinder. This is inserted from
the outer side of the door and secured on the inner side
of the door using a securing plate. There is then also a ring
needed to be able to tighten the cylinder. The cylinder
sits, as it were, in the lap of the ring.

3/ This is a “woningbouwcilinder” (in English, house-building cylinder),
also known as a “profiel” (in English, profile) or “renovatie” (in English,
renovation) lock. This is easy to recognise because of its striking
appearence.

4/ The last type is a “pinslot” (in English, pin lock), also known
as a “veiligheidslot” (in English, security lock) or “bijzetslot”
(in English, supporting lock.) This is sometimes just a hole in the
door, sometimes there is an oval finishing plate also present.

—————————————————————————

The lawyer:

It is sensible to arrange a lawyer before you squat (see [[address list]]) and
to discuss the squat with him/her before you actually squat. The lawyer
can then check whether he/she is able to, and wants to, take your case.
Arranging a lawyer in advance is handy if during the squat, or during
the days immediately after it, things happen for which legal support
is necessary. If you have to go looking for a lawyer after the squat then
it can happen that all lawyers (that in theory accept squatting cases)
are too busy. It can sometimes take days to find a lawyer, and in some cases
that is too long. Never tell the lawyer the address or the date over the
telephone: it is not entirely uncommon for the phonelines of
squatters and lawyers to be “tapped” by the police. You obviously don’t want that the
police and the owner are already informed about your squatting action before
it has happened!

In the Netherlands you always have the right to have legal support from a lawyer. To
ensure that that right is available to everyone there is a [[Raad voor Rechtsbijstand]]
(Council for Legal Support) that helps people with a low-income with legal costs.
This council determines, on the basis of your income, how much of your legal
costs you should pay yourself. Before you go to the lawyer you should fill in
the form “Verklaring omtrent Inkomens en Vermogen”, you can pick this up at the
Sociale Dienst (social service office) and you must also have it stamped at the
Sociale Dienst, after which the form becomes valid. You take this form with you
to the lawyer. The lawyer will then send the form to the Raad voor Rechtsbijstand.

If you have a minimum income then your “own contribution” to the lawyer’s costs
is around 90 euro.

The “squat set”

As reported earlier you will need a table, a bed and a chair that must immediately
be put inside once the door is open. Only then can you claim “house peace.” A number
of other things are naturally also useful. Given that it is always very unclear
in the first few days whether you will be able to stay in the house longer, it is
handy to avoid taking too much stuff with you into the house at this point. The
first few days in a squatted place is basically a bit like going camping. So
take a sleeping bag, a fire extinguisher, toilet paper, torch, mobile telephone,
radio en so forth with you. It’s also useful to take some cleaning equipment
with you, such as a bowl, a broom/brush, black plastic bin bags and a dustpan
and brush. If you clean the house right away then you feel more quickly at home,
it gives you something to do, and it makes a good impression on the neighbours.
In most cases the neighbourhood is extremely happy if they see that there is finally
something happening again being those filthy windows.

The neighbourhood letter:

If you’re going to squat (especially in the “people’s neighbourhoods”, the neighbourhoods
with large quantities of social housing) then it is advisable to write a neighbourhood
letter and to distribute that in the area around your new squat. You only do this,
of course, after the squat. As well as informing your new neighbours what exactly
has happened, it gives them a chance to make contact with you. You “lower the barrier”
between them and you, as it were. Neighbours can often come with useful information
that can help you in your campaign to retain your squat. In the neighbourhood letter
you introduce yourself (e.g. I am a young student), you explain your motivation (e.g.
it is impossible to find a room in this city.) Further you can give information about
the place, the length of time it has stood empty, and something about the owner.
Make it clear that you simply want to have somewhere to live and that they (the neighbours)
are welcome for a cup of coffee. Het is smarter to only give your first name, in connection
with possible damage claims and procedures that are harder to use against you (or
are easier to delay) without your surname. In squatting you mostly use only your
first name. In most cases you write the neighbourhood letter before the squat,
so that you can distribute it at the squatting action itself or once the situation
has become a bit quieter. If you nevertheless choose to write the letter only after the
squatting action, then don’t wait too long to do this.

Occupation team:

It is advisable to be continuously present at your squat during the first week. It
is during that first week that the chance is highest of a visit from the
owner, from the neighbourhood police, from the Bouw- and Woningtoezicht (see
earlier) and other people. To stay sitting in your house for 24 hours a day, for
a whole week, is very hard work and unhealthy. For this reason try to find
people in advance that want to help you with the occupation. Ask for this purpose
your family, frends, acquaintances and (where applicable) fellow students. Make
appointments with them about when exactly they will come, and try and get your
occupation schedule for the week as full as possible. Because (in the beginning)
you don’t take much stuff with you, the occupation can often be boring, and a case
of waiting for new developments. Try and arrange your occupation schedule in such
a way that there are always (at least) two people present and ensure there
are games, comic books and so on. Make arrangements about what your fellow occupiers
should do if/when somebody comes to the door, and go through your story with them.

Barricading material

If it is suspected that the owner is dangerous, then you must make preparations for this.
It is then especially important to make the place as sealed as possible so that the
owner can not get in. You can reinforce your front door with wood or with a bed spiral,
placing a ‘bouwstempel’ behind it for extra support. (A ‘bouwstempel’ is an adjustable metal
pole that is used by builders to support ceilings etc.) You can reinforce the windows
with “concrete gauze” (which is easy to have cut to size) or bed spirals that you
screw tightly to the window frames, it is (in general) difficult to come through such
reinforcement. Don’t forget about the back of the house, it often happens that the owner
also has access to that. You must gather the reinforcement/barricading materials before
the squat, and thus belongs by the preparatory phase.

If you suspect that the owner is dangerous, then you should discuss this well with
the squatting hour. You should also arrange a bigger occupation team, and ask if there
are people from the squatting hour who can help occupy during the first few days. If
a gang of thugs does come, then it is often the owner himself with family, or a pair
of builders or body-building types. Their intention is mostly to evict the house.
The squatting hour can also give you an alarm list. If you ring the entrance number
of the alarm list then there will very quickly appear a group of squatters before
your door that will help you to defend your squat. You can also call the police,
an owner is not allowed to evict the house himself. In the most cases the police
will then tell the owner to leave because he may not evict the house himself. There
have also been cases where the police did nothing and let the owner evict the place.

Chapter 4: Finally squatting!

The squatting action itself:

At the squatting action itself it’s always exciting and stressful
for some time. You must ensure that you have enough people
with you. The door must be broken open, the “squat set” must be
taken inside as quickly as possible, the neighbours must get
over their initial shock, the police will probably come quickly,
the owner might come along (certainly if he lives in the neighbourhood)
and what exactly is the situation inside the house? If you squat
with them, the squatting hour people can be a big help. They know
the squatters in the neighbourhood who will want to give a helping
hand; it’s handy to perform the squatting action itself with
a group of people (at least 15 people) in case the police or the
owner decides to cause trouble. There is, at every squatting hour,
a number of experienced breakers that are able to open the door
quickly and with as little damage as possible. There are also people
at the squatting hour that can talk with the police. The police knows
the neigbourhood squatting group and will thus less quickly switch
over to causing trouble. The squatting hour people can also help you
with relpacing the lock, or give you advice about this. They
can support you if you talk to the neighbours and they can help
you with barricading if that is necessary.

You have a house:

After the police have checked that the house is empty, most people present
at the action will again leave. This happens mostly very quickly and if you still have questions
make sure you ask it directly to one of the squatting hour people.

Getting to work:

Once everything has quietened down you can make yourself busy with the things
that you have to do before you can feel at home. Firstly, take a look at the
whole place. Check that it is not possible to simply walk into the place.
Check whether the doorbell works. Sometimes a place has been demolished
from the inside. In such a case the toilet and the kitchen might have been
smashed to pieces. This is mostly done to discourage squatters. It also happens
occasionally that the water pipes are sawn through, and that the ceiling
is smashed up. Always check the water pipes, and the drainage, before
you connect the water. Let the water run for a while before you use it,
because (owing to the long period of standing empty) there is often rust
in the pipes. Don’t be discouraged if a place has been demolished from
inside. It is in most cases not a huge amount of trouble to get everything
connected and fixed up once again.

Friend or foe:

It is sensible not to let any strangers inside. If it turns out that
they still (for one reason or other) must come inside then you should
make an appointment and arrange that they come back later. This way you
have time to consult with your lawyer or the squatting hour. You can then
also ensure that there are more people in your house if/when they come
back. From the moment that you squat a place you have “house peace”,
which means that nobody is allowed to come inside without your permission.

Gas, water and light:

Record the meter-readings from the [[utilities]] (gas and electricity, and water
too if there is a water meter) so that you can use this information
for the creation of a legal connection. The energy companies (in the name
of keeping costs low) prefer not to disable supply, so even if there is
no legal connection in the house when you squat it, the utilities
will probably still be operational. These days you can open an account with
the energy companies by telephone or internet. We advise that you put the payment
of the utilities as quickly as possible on your name. If you don’t do that,
it’s theft. This can be an extra argument for steps to be taken against
you. If the utilities have been completely disabled then (in most
cases) it costs more to have them again connected. The connection of the
utilties brings, apart from luxury, also fire security. In some cases,
arguments based on (lack of) fire security can lead to threats of eviction.
Always check connections, pipes and so on before you use them. (A lengthy period
of not being used can effect their condition.)

Declarations from neighbours:

Ask neighbours and people who live around you if they want to write a declaration
in which they state that the place you squatted stood easily a year empty.
In such a declaration they can also express their support for your action. This
will stengthen you in any (legal) procedures that might follow after your squat.
Declarations that have been written by the neighbours themself, with their
own story, have a higher juridical value.

Enjoy!

If everything goes well, and with a bit of luck, then after about a week
you can begin furnishing your house and, more generally, start enjoying life
there. In a squat it is possible (as in any house) to have telephone, internet
and cable connected. If you’ve lived there already some time and everything
has stayed quiet, you can even go on holiday. Sometimes you keep a house
for 6 months, sometimes it lasts years, and – occasionally – sometimes it
lasty only a few days. Eventually something will happen. Either the
owner will begin a legal procedure against you or he will want you
to begin a (permanent or temporary) renting contract.

Chapter 5: And then?

Stay researching:

After the squat it is sensible to continue researching and
monitoring whether there are developments with your squat.
Keep watching the newspapers and keep an eye on publications from
the local council (regarding permits that have been requested
and/or issued.) It is advisable to discuss all developments
as quickly as possible with the squatting hour and your lawyer.
It is good to maintain contact with the squatting hour even if
nothing happens for a while; if/when something does happen the
squatting hour can then react more quickly. Lawyers are always
very busy. It is thus important to find out as much information
as possible by yourself (to give to your lawyer, but also for yourself
of course.) For example, go once again to the BWT and take a look
at what the plans are, make a copy of them if possible, and otherwise
copy out as much as you can.

House archive: It is important to keep your house archive (the
collection of information you gather and store about the house)
up to date, also after the squat.

The press declaration/explanation:

If you think that there should be media attention for your squat
then you will need to have a good, newsworthy story. The squatting
of a place is, in itself, not newsworthy in Amsterdam. The press
is there for actions, for remarkably scandalous stories, or
for projects and campaigns. If you think you do want to have contact
with the press then do let the squatting hour support you. The
squatting hour has experience with the press, and often also has
contacts within the press. You will need to begin with a press
release. It is pretty difficult to write a good press release,
a whole side of A4 is already considered a lot. You obviously
want to ensure that your press release gets read. In that case,
the ordering of your text is important. Naturally, the first
thing in a press release is a catchy headline, that should
be directly relevant to the action or activity. In the first
paragraph, that should not be too long and that should be written in
bold text, you describe: who (you, in co-operation with
squatting group X, for example), where (the address or the
neighbourhood) and why (your desperate need for housing,
the behaviour of the owner, or the (new) council policy.)
You thus explain quickly and clearly what your story is about.
In the next paragraphs you put in any necessary information
to stimulate the interest of a journalist. Keep your information
clear and well-organised. Always declare (at the bottom) who
the press release is from (e.g. the new residents or with
the name of an action group, for example) and also give a
telephone number at the bottom so that the press can make
contact with you. You can e-mail or fax a press-release. Of
course, you don’t give in the press release your (real) surname.

If you want the press to come to your newly squatted house then
you must think about this carefully in advance. You must ensure
that your story hangs together well, and it should be newsworthy.
Think also whether you want to see your photo appear in the newspaper,
or whether you want to be seen on TV. If you indeed do
talk to the press, then try and do this in a quiet place. Try and
keep control over the calmness of the situation and the
direction of the converation. Journalists are often looking
for sensation or shocking material, because that is good for
the viewing/readership statistics. Communicate thus as concisely as possible
the information that you want them to use, and don’t let the
topic of the conversation drift away from your topic. If you
do this then you maximise the likelihood that the article they
write comes out as you would have wanted.

After you have squatted you will probably have to deal with
all kinds of legal fuss. The owner can
report the squat to the police, you can receive on your
doormat a so-called “oprotbrief”; this is the
letter in which the owner asks you politely but firmly to
leave (i.e. because otherwise he will take you to court.) The owner
might also take you to court directly. The district or city council
can sometimes cause problems for you by using their power (based on the
authority of the state) to have you evicted (“bestuursdwang”). The
BWT can also cause problems by complaining about the condition
of the place or about fire safety.

Criminal law:

Article 138 and 429: There is a chance that the owner reports
the squat to the police. Such a report can be based upon Article
138 or on Article 429sexies. Artikel 138 is “huisvredebreuk” (in English,
the violation of house peace.) A rough English translation of the literal
text [[reads]],

—————————————————————-
Article 138:

1. He that unlawfully forces his way into a house or an enclosed space
or terrain that is in use by another or, unlawfully being at that
place, does not (when confronted with such a demand by, or flowing from,
the right-holder) does not promptly remove himself, is punished with a prison
sentence of at most six months or a fine of the third category.

2. He that has procured access by breaking in, or climbing in, or by use
of false keys, or under false pretences, or he (without pre-knowledge
of the right-holder and for a reason other than the making of a mistake, has
gone inside) that is encountered at the place in the hours of the day
designated for night’s rest, is judged to have committed forced entry.

3. If he issues threats or acts in such a way as to frighten a person,
the punishment is a prison sentence of at most a year or a fine of the
third category.

4. The punishments in paragraph 3 and 4 can be raised by a third in the case
that two or more persons (working together) commit the crime.

—————————————————————————–

If the owner reports the squat to the police on the basis
of huisvredebreuk, he’s claiming that the place is still
in use. If everything went to plan with the squat then the police
will have already seen the place from inside and will have been able
to see that, at the time of the squat, the place was not in use.
Thus there can be no basis for a huisvredebreuk complaint. It is more
likely that the owner declares that the place was in use less than
a year ago. In both cases it concerns violations of criminal law.
In such a case there is thus an “Officier van Justitie” (OVJ, in English
“Officer of Justice”, who works for the “Openbaar Ministerie”, i.e. the
Public Office) needed who makes a decision. The OVJ is mostly informed and advised by
a senior local policeman (known in Dutch as the “buurtregisseur”.) If
your owner has indeed reported the squat to the police, then you should
explain to the buurtregisseur exactly why you are so certain that the
place was out of use for more
than a year. You should also give him declarations from neighbours
to add weight to your story (copy these first, of course.) If the OVJ
decides nevertheless to act against you, you run the risk of being
quickly evicted, so seek contact -as quickly as possible- with
the squatting hour and with your lawyer. Discuss with the squatting
hour and your lawyer how good your chances will be if you start
a procedure against this decision. If you do want to fight against
the decision of the OVJ then you will have to take the state to
court. Only your lawyer can do this and it carries with it
rather significant financial risks. If you take the state to court
then it often (but not always…) happens that the police
delay eviction until there is a ruling in this case against the state.
The head OVJ has made a policy declaration about this. You must
however start the case against the state -very- quickly if you are
to prevent yourself from being immediately evicted.

Kort geding (in English, “short courtcase”):

A kort geding (“short courtcase”), KG, is the quickest type
of court case in civil law. In a civil case the judge is asked
to make a decision regarding a difference of opinion between
two parties. The complaining party requests a date for the sitting
from the court and issues a summons. There is usually (but not
always) at least a week between the summons and the case itself. With
squatting it is mostly the owner who demands eviction. With a KG
it must be so that the complaining party can demonstrate a “spoedeisend
belang” (in English, urgency-demanding interest), which essentially means that
he has a reason to urgently want eviction and therefore cannot go
through a full court case (a so-called “bodemprocedure.”) It also happens
that owners appeal to their “recht van vorderen” (right of requisitioning.)
You are in their property, after all, without right or title. In
that case the owner must first be able to demonstrate that he has
an “interest” (or a “stake”), to be able to bring about an eviction.
Very shortly summarised: the owner tells his story, what he wants
to do with the place, and that he quickly needs the place
back to be able to do this. You must then demonstrate that the
owner’s story is not credible and that eviction will only lead
to (a long period) of the place standing empty. This all happens
at a sitting in a courtroom. If the judge has his judgement ready
right away then he can immediately give a ruling. But in most
cases he will want to think about it a bit (or, in any case,
give the illusion that he wants to think about it a bit…) and
he makes his judgement known two weeks later. With squatting,
the KG is the most frequently encountered type of case.

“De bodemprocedure” en “Verkorte bodemprocedure”
(In English: The “full proceedings” court case, and the
shortened “full proceedings” court case.)

A full court case (“bodemprocedure”) is begun if there is no
“urgency-demanding interest” to demonstrate but there is
nevertheless a disagreement between two parties. The bodemprocedure
does not happen very often in the context of squatting. Shortly
summarised, a bodemprocedure is a lengthy legal procedure, conducted
in writing, in which the complaining party makes the first
move and after which (again in writing) claims- and counters-claims
are made. In this way the judge can come to a decision. If
one of the parties (or the judge) asks for it then it is possible to
have an actual sitting in a courtroom. The parties involved
can, a number of times, ask for a four-week
postponement of proceedings. With a shortened bodemprocedure
(“verkorte bodemprocedure”) it is agreed in advance that a
postponement can only happen once. It is also possible with
such a courtcase to ask the judge for a sitting in a courtroom.
To start a bodemprocedure it is not necessary to have an
“urgency-demanding interest.”

The party that loses can lodge an appeal if they are not happy
with the ruling.

Bestuursrecht
(In English, Governance law)

Cases against the government: If you don’t agree with a decision
made by the government (mostly municipality- or city district- councils)
then you can make complaints against this and start legal procedures.
In most cases such procedures are against permits, for example
permits for demolition, building, monuments, splitting (a procedure
which makes it possible to sell houses that are contained in one
larger building), or declarations that a house is uninhabitable.
Such affairs are too specialist to go into detail here. The
squatting hour can tell you more about these.

CHAPTER 6: LEGALISATION

The chance to get legalised:

The chance to get your squatted place legalised is not big. Nonetheless it
does happen occasionally that the residents can obtain a fully-fledged
rental contract for their squatted place. If you would also want this,
then it is sensible (soon after the squat) to send a letter to the owner
in which you explain that you have squatted his property and that
you would be gladly willing to rent it from him. In such a letter you can
also propose a renting price, but you don’t have to do that. It will also
help sometimes if you can exert some pressure on the municipality, the district
council or the owner. The press can be a good method for achieving this. If the
owner offers you a rental contract but you yourself do not want to rent
the place (or if you cannot afford it), then it will definitely be possible to
find somebody that -does- want to rent it. Legalisation is a chance to make
a long-term addition to the social housing supply and it is a real waste if
this opportunity is not taken. You can then ask for help from the people around
you when you go looking for a new place for yourself.

Renting:

Tip: Never sign anything before a renting team or your lawyer has taken a look
at it. Also go along to the squatting hour.

Huurteams
(In English, renting teams)

Since May 1997 there have been “renting teams” ([[huurteams]], see [[address list]])
active in old
neighbourhoods of Amsterdam. The renting teams are an initiative of the
community centres. They research the relationship between the rent level and
the quality of a rented place, particularly those owned by private owners
(as opposed to housing corporations.) The renting team makes house visits
and offers its services. The renting team helps you to calculate the
“point total” for your house and the corresponding maximum rent. They
also inform you about the available procedures to have the rent
corrected (if it is too high) and they can guide and accompany you
in this process. The renting team can (when this is relevant) help you with
the rent level you want to propose to the owner. If you do get a rental
contract then the renting team can later also support you with (where
applicable) a rent-lowering procedure or with fighting against a rent
increase.

The renting team works for free and will keep your details confidential.

Houses / single-floor houses

Where it concerns a single-floor house (e.g. “house number 23, 3rd
floor”) then it is certainly a good idea to make, as quickly as possible,
a renting proposition to the owner. By squatting his place you have confronted
the owner with a problem and your proposal to rent the place offers him a
direct solution. If the rent that the owner proposes is higher than the
maximum rent for the place (which is determined by the previously mentioned
“point total”) then it is better to still accept the contract, because
you then at least have a contract. After that you can start a procedure
to have the rent lowered. Ask for advice from the renting team. Don’t
pay any ‘rent’ without first having a rental contract. It doesn’t
give you any rights at all and is thus simply a gift to the owner!

If you squat from a housing association then it
is smart to become a member of the association. In any case you should
register yourself as a house-seeker.

A building:

With a whole building the situation is mostly somewhat more complex.
The most buildings are (by design) not living spaces, and because
of this they do not fall under the law that regulates rent levels.
If the owner is nevertheless prepared to legalise you, then there
often follows heavy negotiations. Not only with the owner, but
also with the fellow residents and users of the building. As
well as the financial problems there can also be objections
based on principle. Such objections have to be won over
before decisions can be made. If the building has spaces
that are jointly used by several people/groups then
a financial solution for such spaces is also needed. If
there are spaces that are in use by third-parties
then there is thus an extra party with whom agreement
has to be reached. In the most cases it is sensible to
set up an association or a foundation which then
rents the building. You can ask for advice about this
from the squatting hour, the renting teams and
the ASW (Amsterdam Steunpunt Wonen = Amsterdam
Housing Support Service, see address list.)

Gebruikersovereenkomst
(In English, “Users agreement”)

A users agreement is certainly not legalisation. If
you sign such an agreement for the place you
live then you have abandoned the last rights that
you had when you were there as a squatter. You have
thus been degraded to an anti-squatter. You sign
an agreement with the owner in which there stands
that you may use the place for a particular
length of time if you pay a particular sum of money.
The agreement can simply be ended by the owner
when it suits him, and in such agreements he
only has to give you notice varying from a few
days to a few weeks. And once the owner has told
you to leave then you simply don’t know if the
place is going to be used again. Sale does not
always mean, for example, that the place will
be genuinely used after the sale.

CHAPTER 7: EVICTION

So you have to leave?

If you have lost the legal cases or the Officer of Justice has made
a decision against you, and there exists a legal order to evict you,
then it is not always so that this quickly happens. The municipal council
of Amsterdam has a policy not to evict places if this will lead
to the place standing empty, or to the use of anti-squatters. This
doesn’t mean that they never do it, but they will occasionally want
to listen to your arguments. If you can make it clear to the
executives of the municipality and to the police that the eviction
will lead to (long-lasting) emptiness, it can happen that they decide
to postpone the decision to evict.

Making arrangements:

You can try to arrange with the owner or with the senior local police officer
that you still need 2-4 weeks to find something new and that you will leave
after that without problems. (You can add weight to your argument by barricading.)
It can happen that the owner and the police choose the easy path and accept
such an arrangement. It does happen, but don’t count on it.

Leaving:

If you try to make such an arrangement but it does not work, you can
consider leaving the house. If there has been a legal eviction order
issued then you never know for sure when you will actually be evicted.
In most cases the senior local police officer will tell you one or more
days in advance. It can also happen that you are not told at all when
you will be evicted. The chance thus exists that you will be woken up
by the eviction, or that it will happen when you are not at home. The
easiest and safest option is thus to leave the house.

Resistance:

You can choose to resist an eviction. In that case, there are many
things to be done, and many choices to be made. As well as
heavily barricading your house (ask for advice and help from
the squatting hour) there are many other things that you should
do. You should consider whether the resistance will happen
inside, or outside, or both. You must find people that
are prepared to help you and you must consider the risks.
Check possible escape routes. Make contact with the arrestee
support group and with your lawyer. There are many different
ways of resisting eviction and the possibilities depend on
the particular situation of your house. Try, along with
your housemates, your friends and the squatting hour, to
come up with some good ideas.

Arrestantengroep
(In English, Arrestee Support Group)

If you expect that people will get arrested then there is an [[arrestee support
group]] that can support you (see [[address list]].) This group has the goal of
supporting arrested activists, and acts as a bridge between your lawyer
and your personal supporters, so that they can stay informed about
your situation. They can, for example, look (in advance) for a criminal law lawyer
that will defend you. If you get allocated a duty lawyer then this lawyer will
also defend you, but only because they were coincidentally given your case
to deal with. The arrestee support group tries to find out where you are
being held and they can bring you a packet containing (for example) clean underwear
and a good book. They can call your partner, your parents or your employer
for you, should you want that. They can also bring your medicine to you.
Make contact with the arrestee support group in advance, you can then discuss
certain things with them, and they will from that point on understand better
who they are supporting, and why. Of course you should never communicate
important information over the telephone, so make an appointment to speak
with them in person.

————————————————————————————————

CHECKLIST

House

Address:

Is empty since:

Designated function of the place:

Electricty/Gas/Water? Yes / no

Telephone connection? Yes / no

Managed by a real-estate agent? Yes / no

If yes, who? :

For rent / for sale?…………………………………………………………………………….

Owner

Name:

Address:

City/town:

Name of business:

Partners/partnerships:

Address: Telephone:

Plans and permits

Plans of the owner:

Has the house been reported empty to Dienst Wonen? Yes / no

Building permit? Yes / no

Demolition permit? Ja / nee

Permit to split? Ja / nee

Information

Contact with neighbours? Yes / no who:

A match between the door and doorframe? Yes / no

Known on Internet? Yes / no

Known by SPOK? Yes / no

If so, how:

Squatting and lock

What type of lock does it have?…………………………………………………………………………

Do you have new locks? Yes / no Number of keys:

The easiest way to come inside (window, door, roof, knocking/ringing?):

Legal

Lawyer: Telephone:

VIV? Yes / no Number:

Squatting set (table, bed, chair) Yes / no (If not, get them!!!)

Barricading Yes / no What’s needed?

Neighbourhood letter? Yes / no Declarations from neighbours yes / no

Tools / fuses / toiletpaper / torch / etc. Yes / no

Enough people to occupy? Yes / no

———————————————————————————————————–

Useful addresses

LIST OF ADDRESSES

Squatting hours

Pijp and South: “Molli”
Monday evening 19.00-20.30
Van Ostadestraat 55 HS

East: “Joe’s Garage”
Tuesday evening 20.00-21.30
Pretoriusstraat 28 HS

West: “Moya”
Monday evening 20.00-21.00
Frederik Hendrikstraat 111 HS

Centre and North: “Vrankrijk”
Thursday evening 20.00-21.00
Spuistraat 216 HS

Student squatting hour
Wednesday evening 17.30-18.30
Nieuwe Doelenstraat 55

SPOK (Speculatie Onderzoeks Kollektief)
Wednesday evening 20.00-21:30
Spuistraat 5

Arrestee support group: 06-42413496 en 020-6790712

Lawyers

Margreet Breukelaar, Laura Scheffer en Bianca Meyer
Batjanstraat 5, tel. 020-6935544

Charlotte Koopman, Mina Kashyap en Rosa Ruimschotel
Sophialaan 33, tel. 020-6762500

Marq Wijngaarden
Keizersgracht 560, tel. 020-3446200

Joop Seegers
Egelantiersgracht 576, tel. 020-4200888

Marcel Schuckink Kool
Hoefkade 310, Den Haag, tel. 070-3899510

Municipal council of Amsterdam, and the city district councils

Municipal council of Amsterdam (in Dutch, Gemeente Amsterdam)
Amstel 1
1011 PN Amsterdam
020 5529111

City district councils (in Dutch, Stadsdelen)

Amsterdam Oud Zuid
Koninginneweg 1
1071 HZ Amsterdam
020 678167

Zuideramstel
President Kennedyplantsoen 3
1079SK Amsterdam
020 5464464

Amsterdam-Centrum
Amstel 1
1011 PN Amsterdam
020 5524444

Amsterdam-Noord
Buikslotermeerplein 2000
1025 XL Amsterdam
020 6349911

De Baarsjes
Baarsjesweg 224
1058 AA Amsterdam
020 5892411

Bos en Lommer
Bos en Lommerplein 250
1055 EK Amsterdam
020 5812771

Geuzenveld / Slotermeer
Plein ’40-’45 nr. 1
1064 SW Amsterdam
020 8898000

Oost / Watergraafsmeer
Lineusstraat 89
1093 EK Amsterdam
020 7744444

Osdorp
Osdorpplein 1000
020 5180800

“Environment and building supervision service”
(in Dutch, Dienst Milieu en Bouwtoezicht)
Grootstedelijke Projecten Weesperplein 4, tel. 020-5513888

For permits see the city district councils and Welstand Amsterdam

Kadaster
Ma t/m vr 9.00-17.00 uur
Naritaweg 3, opposite station Sloterdijk

Dienst Wonen
Maandag 11.00- 16.00 uur en di t/m vr 9.00- 16.00 uur
Zuiderkerk, Zuiderkerkhof 72
020-6806806

Kamer van Koophandel
De Ruyterkade 5, telefonische informatie 0900-1234567 (? 0,70 per
minuut).

Neighbourhood centres (in Dutch, Wijkcentra) and neighbourhood
development initiatives (in Dutch, Wijkopbouworganen)

WIJKCENTRA & WIJKOPBOUWORGANEN

Wijkcentrum Ceintuur
Gerard Doustraat 133, tel. 020-6764800

Wijkcentrum Vondelpark Concertgebouwbuurt
Hendrik Jacobszstraat 4-6, tel. 020-6628237

Wijkopbouworgaan Zuid-West
Achillesstraat 85, tel. 020-6620389

Wijkopbouwcentrum Buitenveldert
Van Leijenberghlaan 124, tel. 020-6449936

Wijkopbouworgaan Rivierenbuurt
Rijnstraat 115, tel. 020-3010030

Wijkcentrum Havens Oost
C. van Eesterenlaan 216-228, tel. 020-4352298

Wijkopbouworgaan Indische buurt
Obiplein 16, tel. 020-6657801

Stichting Wijkopbouworgaan Watergraafsmeer
Hugo de Vrieslaan 3, tel. 020-6939923

Wijkcentrum Admiralen- en Postjesbuurt
Mercatorplein 17 HS, tel. 020-4121537

Wijkcentrum Staatslieden- H. de Grootbuurt
Van Hallstraat 81, tel. 020-6821133

Wijkopbouworgaan Spaarndammer Zeeheldenbuurt
Knollendamstraat 87, tel. 020-6829773

Wijkopbouworgaan Tuindorp Oostzaan e.o.
Aldebaranplein 4A, tel. 020-6315454

Stichting Wijkorgaan Osdorp
Groenpad 4, tel. 020-6190974

Wijkcentrum Gouden Reael
Haarlemmerstraat 132-136, tel. 020-6220514

Wijkcentrum Jordaan
1ste Laurierdwarsstraat 6, tel. 020-6237272

Wijkcentrum Oostelijk Binnenstad
Kleine Wittenburgerstraat 1, tel. 020-6223808

Wijkcentrum d’ Oude Stad
Nieuwe Doelenstraat 55, tel. 020-6382205

Noord Wijkopbouworgaan Nieuwendam/Opbouwwerk Noord
Werengouw 87B, tel. 020-6362501

VARIOUS

Woningkartotheek
Karspeldreef 8, 9.00-16.00 uur (building of the city tax service)

Huurcommissie (a commission that deals with disputes over rent levels)
De Ruyterkade 7, tel. 020-5551333

WEBSITES – can be reached via squat.net
Squatting guides and links to squatting elsewhere

www.squat.net/kraakhandleiding

Kraakforum – info en discussions about squatting (in Dutch)
www.kraak-forum.nl

Mailing list about squatting (in Dutch)
www.krakenpost.nl