Snitches

Ibiza Looking to Put Together Snitch Squad to Report on Lockdown Rule Breakers

Ibizan officials are considering hiring undercover operatives to attend secret parties that break lockdown rules and snitch on the organisers to the authorities. Organisers of illegal parties – who are being blamed for an increase in positive Covid tests – face fines of up to €600,000 (£513,000). The Guardian has the story.

The idea comes as the island, where the renowned nightlife and music scene has long drawn tourists from around the world, seeks to tackle a two-week Covid incidence rate that has soared to 1,814 cases per 100,000 of the population. With most nightclubs shuttered – except for those able to hold outdoor events where patrons are seated at all times – and gatherings in restaurants and bars limited to small groups, officials have blamed illegal parties for the spike in cases.

They have responded with an array of restrictions, from a ban on mixed-household gatherings between 1am and 6am to fines of up to €600,000 (£513,000) for those who organise illegal parties.

Even so, the parties have not stopped. “They’re not only an issue related to public order, which they have always been, but now they pose an obvious risk to people’s health,” a local official, Mariano Juan, told the newspaper Diario de Ibiza. “Police themselves say it’s difficult for them to infiltrate, as they are known to locals. So we have to look outside for help.” …

Local officials are now in talks with a company that is studying how best to put together a team who can help police in detecting these parties, said Juan. “It is not easy as the profile we’re looking for are foreigners between 30 and 40 years old, but we have been working on it for two weeks.”

Nevertheless, he was confident that the initiative would advance quickly. “I have no doubt that it will be up and running this summer… It’s a necessity to safeguard the health situation in Ibiza.” …

The idea has… been heavily criticised by the Socialist party, which leads the regional administration covering Ibiza. A spokesperson, Vicent Torres, called on the island’s officials to put forth “serious proposals that have legal backing” rather than “acting irresponsibly by launching ideas that we cannot agree to”.

Worth reading in full.

Stop Press: “I absolutely love this story,” says Guardian reporter Robyn Vinter, apparently welcoming the idea of hiring tourists to spy on each other.

“I Hate Neighbourhood Snitches”

A reader spotted a good comment by someone styling herself “Delores” on Nextdoor.co.uk, a website that hosts numerous local forums. This one was headed “Neighbourhood Snitches”:

I hate Neighbourhood Snitches. Unbelievable, after over a year in lockdown, a family decides to have a celebration in their garden with just a few family and friends and their neighbour opposite – not next door, opposite! – decides to take a photo of them in their garden, post the photo on a neighbourhood WhatsApp group asking whether they should report them and one of the group members informs them to contact the police!!!

The neighbour complains that the family are disturbing them. The police show up and stop the celebration. This is on a beautiful Sunday evening between 6-7Pm. The disturbed neighbour had their window open whilst taking the photo. How disturbed were they really?? This is the calibre of neighbour living on XXXXXXX Road. You know who you are. I hate Neighbourhood Snitches!!!! And the police need to find better ways of spending their time!!!

The reader replied to this person in the forum:

Magnificent comment, Delores. Do, please, one day go to the War Tunnels in Jersey (if you’ve yet to do so). The tunnels – built by the Germans – now house a museum about Jersey’s wartime occupation. There is one exhibit which it is impossible to forget: a small rather crumpled piece of paper on which, in faint pencil, are written two names – those of a father and son who listened to a radio [banned, of course]. The note was written by a neighbour informing the Germans. Father and son were shot.