Housing as a human heritage among society


The need for decent housing is intrinsically linked to the nature of man since his existence as such, because only in it he can socialize and feel positively part inclusive of the world within he lives. Therefore, it is increasingly clear its justification as one of the Economic, Social and Cultural Rights established by the UN, for all and universally recognized.

The right to housing can be understood as one derived from the right to life, since etymologically housing does not mean anything other than "place to live", so that the right to decent housing can be defined as the right of every person to have access to a Habitat in which to develop his usual life in accordance with his personal dignity. Therefore, no doubt why the right to housing is now a primary concern as a Fundamental Human Right in every corner of the world.

Not only in developing countries, but even in the more industrialized, there are large groups lacking a home beside those who, by real estate speculation, have several of them. This allows us to distinguish between two categories: house-being, as necessity-property to which refers the right to housing, and the house-having that correspond to what is designated as wealth-property. It is clear that the conflict of interests existing between the investor and speculator sector and the broad segment demanding worthy places to live does not allow perceiving simple solutions over the immediate horizon. At the end, it's a conflict between patrimonial rights and fundamental rights. This type of conflict makes more difficult the assimilation of the right to housing as a practical certainty. 

What is clear is that a problem as the lack of decent housing is a problem that belongs to society as a whole, and that dissatisfaction carries damage with domino effect. It is a fact that the growth of the rental prices, coupled with a lack of projects suitable for the construction of affordable housing has placed decent housing beyond the reach of low income families, forcing them to live in slums or "shacks". As it is well known, this phenomenon is exacerbated in densely populated cities. Today more than ever, in a world where immigration is widespread, social differences are very clear: the amount of urban space one controls is directly proportional to the status one has and/or to one’s income. It is therefore evident that the differential of space is not justified today in human terms, but only in economic terms. But, as said, Justice understood as respect for equality of rights and of people does not understand economic differences, and sooner or later ends finding exhaust valves. That is why the urgency of the case.

The collective involvement of all the parties involved in the satisfaction of Human Rights becomes necessary, and in particular of the right to housing, understanding that political happiness is an essential precondition for personal happiness, for which are to be completed the most intimate projects, as being happy, integrating them in shared projects, such as the justice, since to set up a better world identity and solidarity are indispensable. All this from the quest for individual dignity, which in turn is an essential factor for his happiness.

The difference in human habitat, in how it had been conceived since the beginning of the modern era and today, displayed from contemporary social problems, raises from the concept of housing as a patrimonial right by law to it as a Fundamental Human Right. When more and more social sectors excluded access to housing and to which the market does not give an answer, and when in the free market increasingly weigh more the assets and good investment than the sake of residence, it is necessary to raise basic housing solutions from other new platforms.

The city is a patrimony of all its inhabitants, and as a living body, the sickness of any of its parts affects to the entire body. That is why the housing problems of some few end up involving the entire population. Not only for solidarity with the disadvantaged, but also as a strategy of sustainability, it is necessary to meet the supply of decent housing for all.