Alcohol, Sisa and homeless
‘Sisa’, the drug of the poor. The fact that it is made of ingredients found in the batteries of cars makes this drug particularly strange. Sisa is sold for 1 or 2 euros at the streets and drug circles, which affirms that it is particularly low cost, easy to use and justifiably called the ‘drug of the crisis’.
KETHEA, one of the biggest therapeutic communities for drug addicts in Greece, is currently running a direct intervention programme in the streets of Athens aiming to provide accommodation, food and a friendly environment to the sisa users that are found in the streets.
About homeless people, a nongovernmental organization estimates that there has been a 25 percent increase in Greece’s homeless population since 2009. More than half of these 20,000 are on the streets of Athens.
One government minister has referred to them as the “new homeless.” They are not on the streets due to drugs or drink, but because they have lost their jobs and homes as a result of the crisis and three full years of recession, accompanied by tough austerity measures designed to get Greece’s public finances back on track.