HLRN hosts regional consultation on the right to adequate housing


The Housing and Land Rights Network of Habitat International Coalition (Middle East/North Africa) is hosting the regional consultation of the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing in Alexandria, Egypt, 23–26 July 2004. This event is organized with the support and cooperation of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. At this time we are able to offer support for some participants to take part and present their testimonies at the consultation. The subject and purpose of the regional consultation is “women’s right to adequate housing and land.” It follows UN Commission on Human Rights resolutions 2003/ and 2004/ calling on the SR to develop a study on the subject, including by way of regional consultations with civil society. The consultation will take place in the Bibliotheca Alexandrina over four days. The first two days will feature a training workshop on how to make the case for women’s housing and land rights by applying the monitoring methodology adopted by the SR. The second half of the program is dedicated to participants presenting their cases in turn, in consultation with the UN Special Rapporteur Miloon Kothari. This program follows that already provided in previous regional consultations in East Africa, Asia and Latin America over the past two years, and has proved to be very beneficial for all concerned. Thus, the consultation seeks to build capacity of the participants to use the human right to housing as a practical means to improve living conditions and ensure equality. HLRN and the SR are seeking participants who represent their communities with cases, especially welcoming those from the community base. The participants will be expected to present testimony analyzing a case using the housing rights framework. Testimonies can present cases dealing with a variety of scales and subjects: § The testimony may be based on an individual case, represent the experience of a broader community, or involve an assessment of a national policy or program. § The themes will certainly vary, covering access to credit, law reform, inheritance, globalization, domestic violence, land tenure, among other subjects. § In each testimony, the SR will be interested to know of solutions applied or which the participant recommends, implementing the State obligations to respect, defend, promote and fulfill the human right of adequate housing for everyone without discrimination. § The problem-solving approach will naturally address issues facing victims of violations or vulnerable groups. If you or your organization is not in a position to participate and testify, nonetheless, you may know of others in your community who could participate. Please know that you could propose another person to participate, and we would consider that participant until we can finalize arrangements directly with her/him. Those proposing a candidate should respond by 2 July in writing to HIC-HLRN’s coordination office, at the coordinates below. The respondent should agree to participate in the full program and briefly identify the subject of the case that s/he will present. No formal paper is required of participants. We ask only that respondents reply with needed information, following the accompanying form, which we provide for your convenience. Those eligible to participate will receive information in advance as to the travel and accommodation arrangements, as well as background materials and detail about the consultation program, resource persons and fellow participants.