A man walks by Paris' Opera house during one of CSP75's (Coordination des Sans Papier 75, 75 are the first two digits of Paris' postal code) weekly protests. The collective organizes this event regularly to show force in hopes of attaining papers for its constituents.
The factory occupied by CSP75 is guarded 24/7 by members of the collective. Even when the door to the factory shuts at 1 a.m. guards remain on the inside. Unless they've been told by the delegates about a specific person coming to the premises no non-members are allowed in. Each member of the collective has an identification card issued to them.
A view of the ground floor of the warehouse. Due to the open space on the ground floor most members spend their day upstairs in the winter, in small rooms where more warm air is trapped, this is important since the collective has no heating.
A delegate checks the list of names from the 12:00 paper check with that of the 4 a.m.. Checks are done to figure out who is living inside of the factory. It's important that a maximum amount of people are constantly inside to help decrease the chance of a raid by the police. Members of CSP75 who have not been present for paper checks must come speak to the delegation.
The newly elected president of the collective, Mr. Drame, adresses his constituents, flanked on either side by members of his cabinet. The president's mandate is not time specific. Once he receives papers a new election will be held. During his speech the president outlined what he expects from the collective and what the collective should expect from him.
Men converse in a room while dinner cooks. Most have the dreary gaze of laborers, however only one man worked today. They're tired due to the self imposed paper checks the collective forces upon them. This room is on the first floor of the factory. As winter approaches many members of the collective are moving upstairs to warmer areas.
A lone bed lies on the floor. Most beds this size are shared by two men or women(separately).With no heating available, and few blankets to spare, sleeping is not an easy task in the Collective.
Djanka has lived in France for 8 years without receiving papers. He feels "imprisoned" in the collective and hopes that soon his problems with papers will be resolved. For now all he can do is wait.
With little work possibilities and years of separation from families, it is difficult to constantly keep a positive attitude. Here a man shows his despair while conversing with other members of the collective about the dilema they find themselves in today: no work, no money, no family, and few prospects.
On the same day that Makasse Diakite was released from the hospital she received her papers, which she is holding in her hand at the collective des sans papiers. It took 8 years to get them.
The collective is buzzing with speculation about what a new law that has yet to be realeased could mean for their struggle to find papers. Many hope that the new legislation will be in their favor but are also cautious not to get their hopes too high.
Diombana Bndjougou, a 25 year old man from Mali, lights a fire on a hot plate connected to a tank of petrol to begin cooking dinner.
Members of the collective begin to distribute the daily meal to their fellow members, who anxiously wait for their rations.
Most days a meal consisting of rice and a sauce either made from concentrated tomatoes and oil, or just oil, is prepared for members of the collective. There are many acts of solidarity amongst the members of the collective, this is one of the most vital of them since it guarantees a minimum of one meal a day for members of the collective.
Towels, pots, pans and the blue basin where kitchen utensils are cleaned inside of dry after the collective meal of the day has been consumed.
Binteu Diawara, of Mali, moved to France in 2007. Kancou Kouate, from the Republic of Guinea, moved in 2005. Fatoumata Cissokho of Senegal moved in 2001. All 3 are mothers of French born children. A new law prohibits the kids from having automatic citizenship. Once 18 they can apply for nationality. Until then they can stay in France on a student visa.
A man washes his feet before praying. 99 % of the collective is made up of practicing Muslims. For most members of the collective praying 5 times a day is one of the few routines they have left.
A member of the collective reads from his Koran. The majority of the collective is made up of practicing Muslims. For most members of the collective praying 5 times a day is one of the few routines they have left.
Mme. Sissoko (left) reaches for a cooking utensil while other members of the collective attemp to fix a hot plate which has broken. Luckily for them Mme. Sissoko does not need it to prepare the dinner for them. Women at the collective do most of the cooking, and the men most of the cleaning.
A delegate reads the names of members who haven't been present for paper checks. They must then come speak to the delegation and explain why they haven't been showing up( it implies they're not living in the factory therefor not helping the occupation). Members not present during paper checks aren't given priority when delegates negotiate with the government for papers.
Djibril Diaby (center, blue jacket), director of communications for the collective, signals members to stop marching. Mr. Diaby organizes the weekly protest and communicates the message of the collective to the media. One of the collective's 2 co-founders, he's now a radio host He received his papers in 2003 but still works everyday to help others in his former situation.
A man looks back at another member of CSP75 who is being told by delegates to calm down during one of the collective's weekly protests. It is important for the collective that everyone partaking in the protest remain respectful of their surroundings.
While delegates from CSP75 negotiated with members of the French government inside of the conseil d'etat members of the collective waited for their leadership outside on the place de louvre. During this moment of waiting a man threw an egg down at the crowd from his balcony on the 6th floor of the hotel du Louvre.
Diombana Bndjougou, a 25 year old man from Mali, pauses for a moment at the bottom of a stairwell. Across the hall a man prays. It is difficult to have moments of complete privacy in the factory.
A piece of literature from the collective lies on the road, accidentally dropped by someone during one of CSP75's weekly protests.