Human right to housing

I could not agree more with the report from Raquel Rolnik on adequate housing in the UK. She reports:

The trend has been to give priority to home ownership in detriment 
of other forms of tenure and to encourage a private renting sector 
with flexible tenure arrangements.
[P]rivate tenancies can be as short-lived as six months and 
significantly more expensive than the social rental sector.
Home ownership has provided housing for more than one generation 
and it is deemed a common aspiration for many. However, the 
takeover of the housing sector by the financial sector has exposed 
many households to a highly volatile market, with skyrocketing 
prices during the boom years [...].
The right to housing is [...] about enabling environments for 
people to maintain their family and community bonds, their local 
schools, work places and health services allowing them to
exercise all other rights, like education, work, food or health.
[...] I would recommend that the Government puts in place a system 
of regulation for the private rent sector, including clear criteria 
about affordability, access to information and security of tenure.
[...] I would encourage a renewal of the Government's commitment 
to significantly increasing the social housing stock and a more 
balanced public funding for the stimulation of supply of social 
and affordable housing which responds to the needs.

Rolnik’s unbiased and fresh reporting is the emperor with no clothes, which I assume is the reason the government has gone mad with denials and retorts this morning. I am so disappointed that when it is presented with clear and useful feedback on the existing situation, without having to pay for expensive research, that it does not listen and take on board the information.

At least in my little corner of the UK, I am working on helping people to find security of tenure. It’s such a basic requirement for most people, and yet so rare in private rented accommodation. Let’s make it easier and more commonplace.


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