Paradigm shift of the Global Housing Strategy framework document endorsed during the UN-Habitat Governing Council

The Member States present unanimously backed the GHS in the form of a Resolution entitled "Inclusive National and Local Housing Strategies to achieve the Global Housing Strategy Paradigm Shift". The highlights include the Governing Council requesting “UN-Habitat to pursue the expected outcomes of the Global Housing Strategy, … including the integration of housing with other urban uses; encouraging “pro-poor” performance of markets; promoting systemic reforms to enable wider access to adequate housing solutions; strengthening linkages between housing, the economy, employment and poverty reduction; using sustainable building and neighbourhood designs and contributing to improving the living conditions of slum dwellers.”

Making slums history: a worldwide Challenge” is another resolution that was approved. This resolution “Invites Member States to define and reinforce new national monitoring systems and national goals for halving the proportion of people living in slums, taking into account the experience gained so far in seeking to improve the living conditions of slum dwellers”. It further “Appreciates the progress made by the “Participatory Slum Upgrading Programme in African, Caribbean and Pacific Countries” among other slum upgrading initiatives.

A third resolution on the Post-2015 Agenda “Encourages Governments and Habitat Agenda partners to give appropriate consideration in their contributions to the Post-2015 Agenda to sustainable urbanization, to sustainable urban development and to the role of cities and local governments in this regard”.

These three resolutions support the paradigm shift promoted by the Global Housing Strategy. The first, on GHS, is future oriented to ensure that housing addresses pent-up and future demand contributing to slum prevention through urban planning as a preventive measure to new slum formation. The second addresses the heritage of slum and deals with the ills of the past lack of urban planning. The third highlights the importance of sustainable urban planning to guide urban growth to include the needs of existing and new urban residents. 

All in all the Governing Council proved to be very supportive of the GHS, including closing statements by the representatives of Kenya and the USA who expressed support to the housing and the GHS as part of the work of UN-Habitat. The resolutions and supporting statements of member states give all GHS partners the needed mandate to move forward in implementing the approved framework document at the national and local levels aiming at producing rights-based, gender-responsive and results-based housing policies and strategies as well as improving the living conditions of more than half of the slum dwellers. 

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The GHS framework document could be accessed through the following links: