In 1944 President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared that the U.S. had a “Second Bill of Rights”, including the right to a decent home. It wasn’t for another four years that the right to adequate housing was accepted under the Human Rights Law (as part of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights). Yet leaders in this country continue to treat housing as a commodity rather than a necessity. When we acknowledge housing as a human right, we can begin to commit funding to address the affordability crisis.
To say the topic of “housing” is on fire right now is an understatement; both the U.S. President and Vice President highlighted housing as a human right in their campaign platforms and California has even introduced a constitutional amendment. In Connecticut, we have supported right-to-housing legislation. Even the CDC understands the relationship housing has on our health, as they issued a nationwide eviction moratorium at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. But for those who need it most, declaring housing as a human right is not just a slogan — it’s their lifeline.
Housing is a human right, Maybeth Morales-Davis, CT Viewpoints, June 13, 2022, available here