The smart city: a social city

What role does housing policy play in the city of the future? Without a doubt, the right to housing should be treated as a fundamental right so that all people can live with dignity and safety. The absence of decent housing not only affects physical and mental health, but also undermines the right to education, professional development and even participation in public life.

The guarantee of the right to housing is increasingly linked to the broader right to an inclusive, sustainable and democratically managed urban environment or, in other words, to the right to the city.

We assume that the right to health and education are an integral part of our public policy system, however, we treat housing as a commodity and use the city as a commercial object for consumption and tourism, privatising urban spaces and allowing 700,000 people in Europe to sleep on the streets every night.

Against this background, the European Commission must speak with one voice and act accordingly. For this, it is necessary to look at the different national models and adopt best practices.

We Socialists in the European Parliament have included in a report on Access to Affordable and Decent Housing which is currently being prepared by the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs some concrete measures:

– increase social housing and commit to a new concept of affordable social housing for all (not only vulnerable groups)
– firmly support at European level the Housing First program to combat homelessness
– exclude at European level social spending from fiscal rules
– improve social housing indicators for the European semester
– improve information at local level on access to European funds for housing
– bet on the circular economy in the construction sector
– effective measures to combat energy poverty and guarantee the provision of basic services to all households
– firm measures to stop evictions.

Read the full article written by Cristina Lago and myself for here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top