Visit to Spain: inputs received

1 November 2019
Submissions available below
Issued by:
The Special Rapporteur for extreme poverty
To inform the country visit to Spain


The United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, conducted an official country visit to Spain from 27 January to 7 February 2020 at the invitation of the government. His visit focused on the links between poverty and the realisation of human rights in Spain.

On 7 February 2020, the Special Rapporteur held a press conference in Madrid to present a statement with his initial findings.

He will present a final report to the UN Human Rights Council in July 2020.

Meetings conducted

January 27: Madrid

  • Meeting with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other ministries
  • Meeting with people with experience of Madrid's minimum income scheme
  • Meeting with the Spanish Ombudsman
  • Meeting with families affected by poverty ***open to press by request***

January 28: Galicia

  • Meeting with Galicia government
  • Meeting with people experiencing poverty in Santiago de Compostela
  • Meeting with people with disabilities in Medelo ***open to press by request***
  • Visit to school and meeting with families affected by social exclusion and risk of poverty in Monfero

January 29: Basque Country

  • Meeting with Basque Country government
  • Meeting with homeless people in Bilbao
  • Meeting with families and children affected by poverty in Bilbao ***open to press by request***

January 30: Extremadura

  • Meeting with Extremadura government
  • Meeting with people experiencing poverty in Merida
  • Meeting with women affected by poverty in Badajoz ***open to press by request***
  • Meeting with Badajoz municipal government
  • Meeting with people affected by rural poverty in Villafranca de los Barros

January 31: Andalucía

  • Meeting with Andalucía government
  • Meeting with school administration
  • Visit to Polígono Sur and meeting with families
  • Visit to Los Pajaritos and meeting with families
  • Meeting with migrant workers in Huelva

February 1: Catalonia

  • Meeting on housing issues in Barcelona
  • Meeting with Catalonia government
  • Meeting with the Catalan Ombudsman
  • Meeting with people affected by energy poverty in Barcelona ***press availability before meeting***
  • Meeting with people with experience of Catalonia's minimum income scheme in Barcelona

February 2: Madrid

  • Meeting with migrant domestic workers ***open to press by request***
  • Visit to housing block and meeting with tenants in Torrejón de Ardoz ***open to press ***
  • Visit to Cañada Real
  • Town hall event with people experiencing poverty ***open to press***

February 3: Madrid

  • Meeting with Madrid government
  • Visit to social services center
  • Meetings with civil society

February 4: Madrid

  • Meeting with the High Commissioner for the Fight Against Child Poverty
  • Meeting with the Independent Authority for Fiscal Responsibility
  • Meeting with the Ministry of Health, Consumption and Social Well-being
  • Meeting with the Ministry of the Treasury
  • Meeting with the Ministry of Education and Vocational Training
  • Meeting with civil society

February 5: Madrid

  • Meeting with members of the Congress of Deputies
  • Meeting with the Ministry of the Presidency, Parliamentary Relations and Equality
  • Meeting with the Ministry of Development and Secretary General for Housing
  • Meeting with the Ministry of Work, Migrations and Social Security
  • Meeting with the Ministry of Ecological Transition

February 6: Madrid

No events scheduled

February 7: Madrid

  • Meeting with Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other ministries
  • Press conference in Madrid ***open to press***

Inputs received

To prepare his report, the Special Rapporteur invited all interested individuals and organisations, including civil society organisations, activists, and academics, to provide input on the situation in Spain to assist him in preparing for the visit. Input was requested by November 2019.

The Special Rapporteur requested comments that address topics such as:

  • The nature of poverty and inequality in Spain, including how poverty is or should be defined and measured, its prevalence, and its distribution.
  • The major challenges and human rights-related problems facing people living in poverty.
  • People disproportionately impacted by poverty, including women, children, young people, the unemployed, minorities, non-citizens, and people living in urban and rural areas.
  • The role of austerity measures, public finance management and taxation policy in relation to poverty.
  • The impact of poverty on civil and political rights, as well as on economic, social and cultural rights such as the rights to health, housing, food, education and social security.
  • The impact of environmental issues and climate change on people living in poverty.
  • Autonomous communities, provinces, municipalities, or communities in Spain that the Special Rapporteur should visit because of their particular relevance to poverty and human rights.
  • Individuals and organisations with whom the Special Rapporteur should meet during his country visit.

UN Agencies, international and inter-governmental organizations

National human rights institution

Civil society organisations


Other stakeholders