- national housing movement -

Launch of Vision Document: Our vision on a radically fair housing policy

The national action coalition Woonopstand presents its vision document, a blueprint for a radically just approach to the created housing crisis in the Netherlands. The right to decent housing is still violated on a large scale by the government, the UN rapporteur also confirmed this after his visit to the Netherlands.

'Balakrishnan Rajagopal advocates that the right to adequate housing be firmly anchored in Dutch legislation, including in the Constitution. “It is not enough to say that 'it will be a concern of the government to provide adequate housing',” says Rajagopal. The obligation to make efforts must change into a legally enforceable right.'

Decades of housing policy aimed at serving the market have eroded Dutch public housing. Housing associations behave like companies and too much of housing is left to the market. Institutional investors, large landowners and slum landlords are given free rein and push many people into expensive and insecure living conditions while they themselves run away with the profits.

We have now reached a point where almost 100,000 people are homeless and more than 800,000 tenants pay too much rent every month. More than a quarter of all tenants do not have enough money left to buy food after paying the rent. More than 550,000 low-income households live in poorly insulated houses and have high energy costs, which hits their livelihoods hard. The current inflation and energy crisis only exacerbate these affordability problems. 

The tens of thousands of people who have demonstrated throughout the country in recent years for the right to housing have ensured that the housing crisis is back at the top of the political agenda. But unfortunately, this does not mean that the past government actually started adequately to solve the structural housing problems. In the year and a half that Hugo de Jonge has been Minister for Housing and Spatial Planning, he has continuously paid lip service to the right to housing, but he has not implemented any real change. Fundamental investments in public housing have not been made and the right to a decent home is still violated every day.

Woonopstand's vision was written as a guideline for housing activists in the Netherlands, as a concrete plan that we can already demand that policymakers start working on. Because it is time to stop sticking plasters and really work on a radically fair housing policy. We explain what we understand by the right to decent housing, and how we translate these rights, entitlements and freedoms into concrete objectives. 

Specifically, we demand the following:

  1. Enshrine the right to decent housing more firmly in legislation and regulations
  2. Develop housing strategies based on the right to decent housing
  3. Implement an institutional renewal of the housing association sector. Democratize the public housing and offers more say to tenants and home seekers.
  4. Pursue an active land policy that focuses on the differentiation of new construction and

offers space for sufficient social rental and housing cooperatives.

With this vision document we explain how we want to continue working as a national action coalition in the future. 

📣 Join our movement! Together we fight for the right to decent housing for everyone!

Vision document

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