The UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, Leilani Farha, is visiting New Zealand from 10-19 February, and there are several opportunities to engage with her during the visit.
Ms Farha will assess positive developments in housing in New Zealand as well as challenges and gaps in the protection and promotion of the right to adequate housing. She will produce a summary of her findings at the end of her visit or shortly after, followed by a full report in due course.
Ms Farha will be meeting with a range of government agencies, as well as non-government organisations, and human rights and housing experts. Community Housing Aotearoa has been working with the Human Rights Commission, Te Matapihi and others to develop a schedule of visits that will provide Ms Farha with access to on-the-ground insights into New Zealand’s housing situation.
There are two particular areas of her work that Ms Farha will be seeking to engage on. The first is the extent to which houses in New Zealand are being used simply as a financial product rather than as great homes fostering wellbeing in communities. The second is to do with how a rights-based national housing strategy has worked in other countries and what lessons New Zealand might learn in order to ensure all New Zealanders are well-housed.
The visit is a real opportunity to show the UN Special Rapporteur what New Zealand’s housing crisis looks like for people seeking decent affordable homes, the contribution we are making to turning this situation around, and what else needs to happen.
Leilani’s reports can be read here http://www.unhousingrapp.org/resources. She will be in Christchurch on Monday the 17th of February 2020.