have we Social Protection like a pillar in
the interventions with people homeless with
Evident link between our
work and the housing theme,
since we are working with « home-less »
(home is not shelter, you
have to « habitare », live in, to make it
But this link kwas not
always evident : for a long time it was
telled that it was the problem of teh people
temselves which was the problem : they
didn’t want to be in a home. Since them, new
publics (migrants, young people) and new
approaches (housing first) have showed that
the housing accessibility and affordability
is a big part if not the biggest part of the
The link could become again
less evident because of : denying certains
rights for certain people (migrants,
european migrants) ; or chronical lack of
space in social housing. This could lead
again to a tolerance to a fact that should
not be tolerated.
Housing is certainly a
crucial point, but is not yet taken
seriously enough in all its dimensions.
There is a general right to
housing in common legislation, but no
absolute right (and certainly not to home,
maybe more easily to shelter). Even
theoretically, it’s not very clear.
Probably this is due to the
materiality of housing, which is
heavy, slow and expensive. You need strong
forces to move society in the good direction
and to make it happen. We always have to
keep that in mind.
On the other hand, every cut,
every lack to this right to housing is a
step further in the tolerance of what should
not be tolerated.
Reality on the field
The group avoided the
migrants question because it would lead to a
specific discussion about rights, what was
not the aim here.
Maybe there is a group of
people who « just » need the place, and do
not need any support to get in and stay.
Maybe. But probably people who already lost
their home need some kind of support for
some time. People who are on a waiting list
are probably more autonomous.
So support is a key
question, this means :
Time : sometimes
the support can even be necessary for a
things must sometimes be teached : how to
use a microwave, when and wher can you get
rid of your trash, …
listen to what the persons says about
housing, what is important to her, what it
represents to her (how did he feel home in
the street, because of what ; what special
needs does the person have,…) Example : a
patient stayed very difficulty for two years
in an appartment alone, to finally realize
he would be much better in a community. Now
he is very happy in a nursing home.
So it’s important to have
different formulas, possibilities, to
respond to the different needs of the
people. As we invent new ways of living in
the society, probably we have also to invent
new ways of housing.
When speaking of housing,
immediately we think of recovery, about « a
better life » and so on.
There is probably no
technical problem any more to get people
housed (housing first has proved you can
house anybody), so the problem – and the
solution- is more political : the ris no
sufficient social housing building (example
of ireland is very clear) and the idea of
support people housed are both
insufficiently discussed and suported by