" Nursing up " , Piazza del Duomo, july 2020


At the beginning of July, while many people were heading to the beaches of Liguria, the largely forgotten heroes of the harsh winter lockdown arrived in Milan from all over Italy. They were front-line nurses who demonstrated on July 4 in the Piazza del Duomo under the slogan “Rispetto” (Respect), and demanded concrete measures to aid their profession and the Italian health system.  Covid protest Milan Italia

On October 11th the “Trunks in the Square” (I Bauli in Piazza) gathered. These were entertainment industry workers protesting the inconveniences and economic hardships caused by the lockdown and Phase 2 restrictions. They warned of the disastrous effects a new lockdown would cause, something that came to pass shortly afterwards.

On October 31st the “Io vivo di danza” (“I live from dance”) protest took place. This was a peaceful and dazzling dance show in which employees of dance schools expressed their need to go back to work, something they had not been able to do since March.  Covid protest Milan Italia

On October 25, the Italian government issued a new DPCM (Decree of the President of the Council of Ministers), again imposing heavy restrictions on daily economic activities and social life, including a curfew from 10pm until 5am. All across Italy– in Turin, Milan, Florence, Rome, and Naples– violent protests erupted, accompanied by the destruction of property and physical attacks and injuries.       

On October 26, the streets, bathed in rain, prompted me to go out with my camera in search of images. I was surprised to find myself caught in a protest of young people from Centri Sociali, or Social Centers, that are social and political spaces for left-wing counterculture and anti-capitalism. They attacked public transportation and police until they were dispersed with tear gas. A video posted on ABC Mundial shows my footage taken that night.  

On November 4 another DPCM imposed a second lockdown, dividing Italy into three different risk areas, and prescribing drastic interventions for the red zone risk areas. And so, the hopes of Italians to resume their working lives and return to normal economic and social activities were dashed once again.  Covid protest Milan Italia

Education in Italy is also suffering the consequences of the lockdown. There is no continuity of classes in the schools, and everyone must remain socially distanced in the colleges and universities. Students and teachers expressed their frustration by gathering in protest at the Lombardy regional government headquarters, or at high schools like Bottoni to do their online lessons together in defiance.   

Pablo Munini, Milan, December 2020

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Covid protest Milan Italia

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