Pact to guarantee the right to a home in Andalucia
The Andalucian regional government, business associations, trade unions, town councils and financial institutions have signed the biggest agreement on social housing in Spain’s history. The pact agrees to build and finance 700,000 flats over the next 10 years – 300,000 of which are destined to be subsidised social housing.
With this pact the Andalucian regional government is attempting to establish the basis for the application of a new law which Spain’s socialist government wants to introduce in the next parliament if they win the general election due to take place next March.
The new housing law would guarantee the right to a decent home for everybody with an income of less than 3200 euros a month. If the law is passed then it would be the first of its type in Spain and Analucian residents would be able to claim their right to a decent home in a court of law if they weren’t satisfied with provision made by the regional government.
The idea is that it would be something similar to the universal right to education and an article would be added to the Spanish constitution to guarantee this right.
The Regional government, business associations and the trade unions UGT and CC OO have all endorsed the pact. Over the last 25 years 500,000 homes have been built in Andalucia which is 42% of the existing total.
The Andalucian president Manuel Chaves, hopes that ‘getting a home stops being a social problem and becomes a right just as article 47 of the Spanish constitution states’. He also said that the new pact to build more homes was one of the most important agreements ever signed in Andalucia. However, Chaves emphasised that the new pact wasn’t about giving anything away for nothing but about eliminating property speculation and making sure that the price of a home was in accordance with the level of income of ordinary citizens.
The future law will guarantee that those citizens with an income less than 3200 euros a month will only have to dedicate a third of their salary to buying a subsidised home or 25% of their income if they are renting. More than 300 people including politicians, bankers and business men and women were present when the document outlining the pact was drawn up in a former convent which had been restored by the regional government.
In addition to building 300,000 subsidised homes the regional government together with various banks signed an agreement regarding the purchase of these homes by its citizens worth 9,500 million euros with a reserve of up to 18,000 million euros for the next 4 years.
Furthermore the regional government will provide 1.
900 million euros for investing in homes. Andalucian town halls have committed themselves to provided a quarter of the costs of providing the infrastructure and personnel for the new housing project with the rest to be provided by the regional government the total cost of which is estimated at to be 5.600 million euros.
The Andalucian regional government has promised to present the Housing and land plan for 2008 – 2012 by the end of this year. It will outline the types of homes, aid and those who will be entitled to a home under the plan. It will specify the number of homes that will be built over the next five years.
Under preliminary plans already drawn up 200,000 homes are to be destined for families whose income is between 600 and 1500 euros a month, 40,000 for families with incomes between 1500 and 2100 euros a month, 40,000 for those families with incomes between 2100 euros and 3200 euros a month as well as 20,000 homes for families at risk or socially excluded families.