Tuesday, January 02, 2018

Tuesday Evening Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Jennifer Wells reports on the CCPA's latest study of the continually-increasing chasm between corporate executives and the rest of the workforce. But the Guardian notes that disclosure of CEO pay hasn't done anything to close the gap - signalling that stronger and more direct public policy will be needed to get the job done.

- Noam Schieber discusses the downside of accepting a place outside normal employment structures in order to avoid taxes in then short term. And Andrew Khouri notes that Donald Trump's attacks on immigrants have predictably allowed employers to exploit workers under threat of deportation.

- But on the bright side, The Local reports on the next goal of a strong labour movement in Germany, where a 28-hour work week is now on the table.

- Jeffrey Sachs points out how corporate greed is damaging the health and life expectancy of Americans. And Danyaal Raza argues that Canada shouldn't let profit motives take precedence over a safe blood supply.

- Finally, Leilani Farha writes that this should be the year to finally address housing as a fundamental right:
Rights-based housing strategies are not one-size fits all, but there are some key requirements that can be shaped to fit national and local contexts. As a starting point, housing strategies must guarantee that no one is left behind, which, among other things, means they must commit to ending homelessness by 2030.

This also means housing strategies must go well beyond the provision of housing. Strategies must have structural change as their ambition. They must aim to transform societies where economic policies and housing systems create and sustain inequality and exclusion, into societies in which housing is a means to ensure security and inclusion.

There are fundamental shifts that rights-based strategies must effect in order to be successful.

Strategies must transform how governments, at all levels, interact with those who are homeless and inadequately housed. Instead of viewing them as needy beneficiaries, objectsof charity, or, worse, as criminals, they must instead recognise that people who are homeless also have rights – and are active citizens who should be involved in decisions affecting their lives. This would ensure that strategies respond to people’s own experiences.

Strategies must also transform the relationship between governments and the financial sector. Because most governments rely extensively on the private sector to meet housing needs, strategies must ensure that human rights implementation is the overriding goal of all investment in housing and residential real estate, and that the primacy of housing’s social function is never a subsidiary or neglected obligation.
(O)ur choice is to either be complacent and allow our cities to become the playgrounds of the rich while the rest of us are priced out of our homes; or to recognise the urgent need for action, and declare 2018 the year of the right to housing, and every year thereafter, until governments are held accountable, cities become inclusive, and our housing accessible, secure, and affordable.

I choose the latter.

No comments:

Post a Comment