Népszabadság publishes in Hungarian homeless bi-weekly

October 20, 2016

Photo: Lili Bayer

A special edition of stories written by the staff of Népszabadság (People-freedom) will appear in today’s edition of Fedél Nélkül (Shelterless), reports 444.hu. The 12-page insert is in the bi-weekly publication produced by Hungary’s homeless and sold on the streets on the model of “Street News.”

The stories will be the first time Népszabadság journalists have published work in the nearly two weeks since the sudden closure of Hungary’s leading print daily. The editorial staff received numerous offers of help from other publications, but in the end decided to show solidarity with Fedél Nélkül.

The bi-weekly paper typically has a circulation of 4,000 copies but this edition will be three times as large. Róbert Kepe, coordinator of the paper’s publisher Menhely Alapitvány (Shelter Foundation), says the foundation is ready to print further editions if the initial 12,000 copies sell out. Hvg.hu reports that any additional costs to the paper will be covered by the originators of the idea, and additional profits will benefit the homeless selling the papers.

“It will mostly look like an expanded Fedél Nélkül release in which a 12-page Népszabadság annex will play a role,” said the paper’s editor. “I would only mention a few of the guest writers right now, but Gusztáv Megyesi, Gáspár Miklós Tamás and Péter Uj will publish with us,” he said, referring to award-winning Hungarian journalist Megyesi, philosopher and public intellectual Tamás and former Népszabadság journalist and 444.hu founder Uj.

The edition is being produced through the support of a civil organization that does not want to be named, and will be the only such cooperation between the staff of Népszabadság and Fedél Nélkül. The latter papers are sold in underpasses and train stations in Budapest, and in larger cities in the countryside. Editions are sold for as much as the buyer is willing to pay, and the profits are retained by the homeless vendors.