Urban October statement of the Women and Habitat African Working Group


Short introduction to our statement on Urban October.

In purpose of Urban October is for us to reflect on the state of our towns and cities, and on the basic rights of all to adequate shelter. It is a time to remind the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns.

Most importantly, it should be a time to reflect on the situation of millions of women who have been denied their rights to adequate housing and land.

The right to adequate housing has been recognized in article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and in other international instruments.

Having a secure place to live, is one of the fundamental elements for human dignity, physical and mental health and overall quality of life, which enables one’s development.

A major hindrance to women’s economic advancement and effective participation in development activities in many parts of the world, but especially in Africa, is the traditional resistance to women’s ownership and inheritance of land and property.

Researches have shown so far is that laws and policies are not the main problems for women’s access or inheritance of land and housing. Rather the problem is with the adherence to the laws and policies within families and kindred, due to deeply entrenched traditions and cultural practices.

Read he full statement : HIC WHWG Urban October Statement