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The right to housing is the economic, social and cultural right to adequate housing and shelter. It is recognised in many national constitutions and in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Definition[edit]

The right to housing is recognised in a number of international human rights instruments. Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognises the right to housing as part of the right to an adequate standard of living.[1] It states that:

Article 11(1) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) also guarantees the right to housing as part of the right to an adequate standard of living.[2]

In international human rights law the right to housing is regarded as a freestanding right. This was clarified in the 1991 General Comment no 4 on Adequate Housing by the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.[3] The general comment provides an authoritative interpretation of the right to housing in legal terms under international law.[4]

The Yogyakarta Principles on the application of international human rights law in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity affirm that "everyone has the right to adequate housing, including protection from eviction, without discrimination and that States shall a) take all necessary legislative, administrative and other measures to ensure security of tenure and access to affordable, habitable, accessible, culturally appropriate and safe housing, including shelters and other emergency accommodation, without discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or material or family status; b) take all necessary legislative, administrative and other measures to prohibit the execution of evictions that are not in conformity with their international human rights obligations, and ensure that adequate and effective legal or other appropriate remedies are available to any person claiming that a right to protection against forced evictions has been violated or is under threat of violation, including the right to resettlement, which includes the right to alternative land of better or equal quality and to adequate housing, without discrimination."[5]

The right to housing is also enshrined in Article 28 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Article 16 of the European Social Charter (Article 31 of the Revised European Social charter) and in the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights.[6] According to UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, aspects of right to housing under ICESCR include: legal security of tenure; availability of services, materials, facilities and infrastructure; affordability; habitability; accessibility; location and cultural adequacy.[7] As a political goal, right to housing was declared in F. D. Roosevelt's 1944 speech on the Second Bill of Rights.

UN Habitat[edit]

The right to adequate housing was a key issue at the 1996 Habitat meeting in Istanbul and a main theme in the Istanbul Agreement and Habitat Agenda. Paragraph 61 of the agenda identifies the steps required by governments to "promote, protect and ensure the full and progressive realisation of the right to adequate housing". The 2001 Habitat meeting, known as Istanbul +5, reaffirmed the 1996 Istanbul Agreement and Habitat Agenda and established the UN Human Settlement Programme to promote the right to housing in cooperation with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. Known as UN–HABITAT, the programme is the most important international forum for the right to housing. It is tasked with promoting housing rights through awareness campaigns, and to develop benchmarks and monitoring systems.[8]

Implementations[edit]

South Africa[edit]

In South Africa, section 26 of Chapter Two of the Constitution establishes that "everyone has the right to have access to adequate housing". The Department of Human Settlements is tasked with implementing this mandate.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Edgar, Bill; Doherty, Joe & Meert, Henk (2002). Access to housing: homelessness and vulnerability in Europe. The Policy Press. p. 17. ISBN 978-1-86134-482-3. 
  2. ^ Edgar, Bill; Doherty, Joe & Meert, Henk (2002). Access to housing: homelessness and vulnerability in Europe. The Policy Press. p. 17. ISBN 978-1-86134-482-3. 
  3. ^ Terminski, Bogumil, "The right to adequate housing in international human rights law: Polish transformation experiences", Revista Latinoamericana de Derechos Humanos, vol. 22, 2011
  4. ^ Edgar, Bill; Doherty, Joe & Meert, Henk (2002). Access to housing: homelessness and vulnerability in Europe. The Policy Press. p. 17. ISBN 978-1-86134-482-3. 
  5. ^ The Yogyakarta Principles, Principle 15. The Right to Adequate Housing
  6. ^ ACHR decision in case SERAC v. Nigeria - see para. 60 (p. 25)
  7. ^ The right to adequate housing (Art.11 (1)). CESCR General comment 4 - see para. 8
  8. ^ Edgar, Bill; Doherty, Joe & Meert, Henk (2002). Access to housing: homelessness and vulnerability in Europe. The Policy Press. p. 17. ISBN 978-1-86134-482-3. 

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right_to_housing — Please support Wikipedia.
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This Magazine
Wed, 20 Aug 2014 07:26:15 -0700

Supporters have since dubbed the CERA-led case the “Right to Housing” challenge. Unlike past legal skirmishes led by anti-poverty activists, which targeted specific laws—such as those that banned panhandling or sleeping in parks—it is a broad, ...
 
Al-Monitor
Mon, 04 Aug 2014 16:26:15 -0700

The illusory right to housing still haunts millions of young people in Egypt, particularly among the poor. Billions of pounds have been spent over the past four decades to provide suitable housing for the young. According to a study published recently ...
 
NewsDay
Fri, 15 Aug 2014 20:00:22 -0700

Rather, recognition of the right to housing by a State means that the State undertakes to endeavour by all appropriate means to ensure that everyone has access to affordable and acceptable housing. Or that the State will undertake a series of measures ...
 
Mail & Guardian Online
Mon, 01 Sep 2014 07:25:55 -0700

The recent spate of evictions in the Western Cape must make the right to housing ring hollow for those left homeless, writes Sandra Liebenberg. Metro police arrive to enforce evictions at Marikana settlement, Philippi East, Cape Town on August 24 2014.

Ahlul Bayt News Agency - abna.ir

Ahlul Bayt News Agency - abna.ir
Mon, 11 Aug 2014 07:15:00 -0700

Al Wefaq National Islamic Society said native Bahrainis must enjoy the right to housing as a natural rights as citizens. Furthermore, Al Wefaq condemns the Authority's distribution of the Bahraini nationality to naturalized foreigners who are afforded ...
 
Queens Chronicle
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 09:10:28 -0700

We do not condone the rhetoric shaming homeless individuals and families. Everyone has a right to housing and we are all fighting together for that common goal.” DRUM's director Fahd Ahmed said, “As an organization of low-income South Asian immigrants ...
 
DigitalJournal.com
Wed, 20 Aug 2014 05:05:42 -0700

"By allowing the situation to deteriorate, like that of homelessness, the Conservative Government of Stephen Harper tramples the right to housing", accuses François Saillant, FRAPRU's Coordinator. He specifically criticizes the Government for granting ...

KCET

KCET
Fri, 22 Aug 2014 17:15:46 -0700

At the Jordan Downs Housing Projects in Watts an adjacent 21-acre brownfield has been marked for redevelopment, and community advocates such as LACAN and the L.A. Human Right to Housing Collective are pushing for expanded environmental testing ...
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