GPR2C Statement on Core Messages for Habitat III in the World Habitat Day 2015



In the context of
the preparatory process towards the 3rd UN Conference on Housing and
Sustainable Human Settlements (Habitat III, Quito, October 2016), considering
the legacy of Habitat II UN Conference(1996)
and inspired by the occasion of
the World Habitat Day 2015, we launch a
strong call for the inclusion of the Right to the City as the cornerstone of
the New Urban Agenda
and of the responsibility of all the actors for its
implementation. In order to do that, it
is essential to ensure the participation of civil society organizations and local governments – on equal basis with
respect to the other actors – as key partners in the definition and
implementation of the New Urban Agenda.

This is
especially important for issues such as representation in national committees,
access to information, and the inclusion of their concerns and proposals on
national and international debates throughout the process. In order to
guarantee a tangible impact also we confirm our commitment to the parallel
World Urban Social Forum.

It is essential
that the whole process and methods include the participation of civil society
organizations and local governments to be able to address the diversity of
interests and practices. Therefore, we call for that this international effort
recognizes innovations by these actors in order to achieve more just,
democratic and sustainable cities in which human rights are fulfilled as well
as their responsibility towards the future generations. The Global Platform is
advocating for a Habitat III outcome to embrace the Right to the City
principles across four core domains:

Right to the City principles

Protect, promote and implement the Right to the City in all
Habitat III documents;

Enshrine new paradigms for integrated planning and management in the New
Urban Agenda

Ensure inclusive, democratic, secure and sustainable cities;

Fulfill the social function of property by strengthening collective
social, cultural and environmental interests over individual and economic

Incorporate the
priorities, needs and experiences of citizens and communities, especially for
women, the poor, the minorities and vulnerable groups, and the organizations
supporting them.

Produce an outcome
document with specific and measurable results and commitments

Ensure access to basic and social services, mobility, public and green
spaces and the enjoyment of natural and built heritage.

Produce an
outcome document with specific and measurable commitments and results on the
implementation of the various components of the Right to the city as well as of
the new Sustainable Development Goals.

The right of
women to use and enjoy cities and the right of women to a life free of violence
in the public space and communities.

Role of local

Ensure full participation of local
governments in the Habitat III process with their role reflected in outcome

Recognize local governments as crucial
actors in the Habitat III outcomes, requiring the means for effective public
management and citizen participation, to preserve cities as commons;

Recognize the central role and
responsibility of local government in the promotion, protection and guarantee
of human rights and the adoption of
Human Rights Charters ;

Recognize the right to a city constituted
as a local political community that ensures adequate living conditions and
peaceful coexistence between peoples and with government;

Implement real decentralization with the
necessary competencies and resources, to ensure that local governments can take
effective decisions to fulfill inhabitants’ rights;

Ensure that all city inhabitants have
rights to participate in political and city management processes and create
conditions for citizens empowerment;

Recognize local authorities as key to a
safe, secure and sustainable urban future;

Enshrine local fiscal systems that generate
people-centred outcomes: fair local taxation and equitable sharing of national
and international resources.

Housing and
secure tenure

Protect, promote
and implement the Right to housing in all Habitat III documents;

Prioritize secure
tenure rights to land and housing as a keystone of the New Urban Agenda;

Enshrine the
right to adequate housing in all legal, policy and delivery frameworks;

Control market-led speculation and protect people and communities from
forced evictions, displacements and land-grabbing;

inclusive, community-led approaches to the production of habitat;

Promote slum upgrading and risk prevention, prioritizing the
security of tenure and the respect of all human rights;

Ensure public
means and support for housing production;

Create a legal
framework to ensure public land value capture operations for the inclusion of
the poor and marginalized people.

Promote explicit
subsidies for female headed households under poverty line and with children
under their sole responsibility.

Jobs and

Enshrine the
right to secure and decent livelihoods in all Habitat III documents;

Ensure legal
protection of workers, including the right to decent work, to organize, and
freedom from discrimination;

Promote inclusive
economic growth and solidarity- based and collaborative economy, that reduces vulnerability, strengthen
livelihoods, narrows gender equity gaps, and prioritizes health and safety;

Encourage the
creation of solidarity- based income for the more vulnerable and act towards
universal basic income

informal economy workers as legitimate economic agents;

Include workers
in the decision-making and planning of cities.

Recognize the
private and public work assumed by women in general which implies a double and
triple burden under their responsibilities, particularly when alone responsible
of their households.

The Global
Platform for the Right to the City
is an international network supported
by over 100 civil society organizations, social movements, academic
institutions, local governments, public sector agencies, foundations and
international organizations, which seeks to create an international movement
to campaign for the recognition and implementation of the Right to the City
at local, national and global level.

The Right
to the City
is defined by the World Charter on the Right to the City
(2005) as the equitable usufruct of cities within the principles of
sustainability, democracy, equity, and social justice. It is a new collective
right of the urban inhabitants, in particular of the marginalized groups and
people living under vulnerable conditions, that confers upon them legitimacy
of action and organization, based on their uses and customs, with the
objective to achieve full exercise of the right to free self-determination
and an adequate standard of living. The Right to the City is interdependent
of all internationally recognized and integrally conceived human rights, and
therefore includes all the civil, political, economic, social, cultural and
environmental rights which are already foreseen in the international human
rights treaties. It includes the inhabitant´s rights to the resources,
services, goods and opportunities of city life, including rights to
citizenship, to participation in governance, and to land for housing and
livelihoods; while also encompassing emerging collective rights, e.g.: to
water, energy or cultural identity. The Right to the City challenges the
commodification of urban land to argue for recognition of the social function
of land and property. Countries and cities have already included these
principles and reframed urban legislation accordingly (e.g.: Brazil and
Ecuador) and practice (e.g.: Mexico City and Montréal).


Brazilian National Urban Reform Forum
(Brazil), Cities Alliance,
Fundación Avina,
Global Fund for the Development of Cities (FMDV), Habitat
International Coalition (HIC), Habitat for Humanity, International Alliance of
Inhabitants (IAI), Polis Institute, Shack/Slu
m Dwellers International
, StreetNet
UCLG Committee on Social Inclusion, Participatory
Democracy and Human Rights
, Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing
and Organizing (WIEGO),
Women and Habitat Network (Red Mujer y Habitat),
Huairou Commission.