UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS Council

Director: JAvin Pombra

Topic: The right to Shelter

The right to shelter is often one that is most forgotten. And yet, it is so important because it is the foundation to all the other rights, we value food, water, safety. Those without a roof over their head are so much more prone to lose their health and security. Unfortunately, the right to shelter is inaccessible to so many. In the urban centers of the world, homeless is at an all-time high. About 150 million people are homeless and about 1.6 billion people live in inadequate shelter. And this isn’t only unique to developed countries as many believe: some of the most unaffordable cities include Hanoi, Mumbai, Bogotá, Buenos Aires, and Rio de Janeiro, where housing costs exceed 200 or 300 percent of the average income.

The causes of this housing crisis are diverse and internationally connected, making for an important and difficult discussion. Not only is widespread migration and refugees moving from their home country a major reason, but country’s own zoning laws and policies have led to lack of available housing. Furthermore, globalization has replaced the need for large industries to provide adequate housing for their workers. These are some of the pressing issues that the delegates of UN Human Rights Council must discuss.

- JP