United Nations Housing Rights Programme
Background/Mandate: The United Nations Housing Rights Programme (UNHRP) was launched in April 2002, as a joint initiative by UN-HABITAT and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The establishment of the programme was a direct response to United Nations Commission on Human Settlements resolution 16/7 and United Nations Commission on Human Rights resolutions 2001/28 and 2001/34, all of which called upon the two agencies to elaborate a United Nations Housing Rights Programme. The substantive focus of the programme is grounded in the Habitat Agenda, in particular paragraph 61, which states that "Within the overall context of an enabling approach, Governments should take appropriate action in order to promote, protect and ensure the full and progressive realization of the right to adequate housing".
Objective: The development objective of the UNHRP is to assist States and other stakeholders with the implementation of their commitments in the Habitat Agenda to ensure the full and progressive realisation of the right to adequate housing as provided for in international instruments.
Activities: The first phase of the UNHRP focuses on five programme areas:
- Advocacy, outreach and learning from partners;
- Support for United Nations human rights mechanisms on housing rights;
- Monitoring and evaluation of progress of realisation of housing rights (including development of housing rights indicators);
- Research and analysis on housing rights (promotion and development of relevant norms, standards and guidelines as well as thematic research on housing rights); and
- Capacity-building and technical co-operation (assistance to States and other stakeholders in building capacities for implementation and monitoring of housing rights.
Flagship Products: Currently, the most prominent output of the UNHRP is a report entitled Housing rights legislation: Review of international and national legal instruments. This review of housing rights in international and national law includes a discussion of housing rights as progressive legal obligations. The report also reviews selected adjudication, e.g. how housing rights legislation is being implemented. It provides a framework for model legislation on housing rights. The Programme plans to publish updated versions of this report -- and its companion compilations of international legal instruments and adjudication -- with regular intervals.
For more details see the UNHRP Programme Document.