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Despite the substantial guidance international law has provided, there has been a severe lack of progress for the right to housing around the world.

At the domestic level, there has been a neglect of the right in the design of public policy, a lack of government commitment, and an absence of necessary resources. Globally, a lack of coherent and concrete data conceals the human rights crisis faced by over one billion people, facilitated by the prioritization of the interests of wealthy investors over the human rights of others. The global state of housing, tied so inextricably to dignity, security, and to life, is in crisis.

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In recognition of the urgent need to respond to this crisis, Leilani’s mission is to promote, facilitate and achieve change that resituates human rights as the priority and underlying principle in all actions regarding housing, by both public and private actors. These are her goals:

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The right to housing does not mean that everyone is entitled to a government provided home immediately. It means governments must ensure that everyone – particularly the most disadvantaged groups - should have access to housing that is adequate.

Housing is only adequate if it is affordable, if it has potable water, sanitation facilities, electricity and other basic services and if it is close to schools, health services and employment opportunities.The right to housing is interdependent with other socio-economic human rights such as rights to health, education, and employment. It is also integrally connected to rights to non-discrimination and equality. And, because adequate housing is crucial to the social conditions necessary for human dignity, it is intimately connected to the right to life.

Too often violations of the right to housing happen across the globe with impunity.

We need not look far to see homelessness, grossly inadequate housing, informal settlements without basic services, people living on streets and pavements, people living with no security of tenure, and people suffering in precarious or temporary shelters.

Forced eviction and displacement in the name of development and real estate investment are commonplace. All of these are violations of the right to housing and all can be attributed to the failure of States to implement this human right through appropriate government policy and programmes, including national housing strategies