The decision by the town of Vic not to permit immigrants without residence papers to enrol on the municipal padrón (list of residents) has provoked a strong protest. The national government insists that the policy is illegal, as all residents have the obligation to be on the padrón regardless of their legal status. It's not just about being on a list, the ability to register also affects access to basic public services. Vic is the political base of an openly xenophobic political movement called Plataforma per Catalunya, but sadly it is not this party which is responsible for the new policy. The town is run by a coalition between Convergencia i Unio, Esquerra Republicana and the Catalan wing of the PSOE (PSC).
The leader of Plataforma per Catalunya, Josep Anglada, is unsurprisingly delighted with the decision which plays directly into the hands of the anti-immigrant party and simply feeds the myth that immigrants do better out of public services than the local population. Now the racists can present themselves as having been vindicated. Meanwhile both Esquerra and the PSC are putting pressure on their local councillors to backtrack on the decision. Vic is probably not alone, as reports start to surface of other municipalities that have more quietly tightened their own requirements.