Right to Housing
According to the Article 21, paragraph 4 of the Greek Constitution, “the acquisition of a home by the homeless or those inadequately sheltered shall constitute an object of special State care”. Nevertheless, housing solutions are generally undermined. This is manifested by the recent following developments: the abolition of social housing organizations; the withdrawal of housing benefits (rent allowances); the constraints in the area of affordability (mainly through the sharp increases in housing taxes, loans’ repayment, and the cost of utilities services); as well as the new legal provisions on evictions (article 15 of the L 4055/12 in Official Gazette Α/12-3-2012, which provides for an express legal procedure without a trial).
In relation to housing solutions for people leaving institutions, according to the Article 82, paragraph 1 of the Correctional Code, the opening of hostels is provided in order to offer temporary accommodation to those prisoners who are homeless after their release.
Greece has signed the Revised European Social Charter on 03/05/1996 but has not yet ratified it. It accepted the Additional Protocol providing for a system of collective complaints on 18/06/1998, but has not yet made a declaration enabling national NGOs to submit collective complaints.
Source : FEANTSA, 2012 (2)
- Housing and Land Rights Violation Database in each country (Housing and Land Network): http://hlrn.org/welcome_violation.php#.VD-IVCi7_vQ
- Zero Evictions Campaign (International Alliance of Inhabitants): http://www.habitants.org/zero_evictions_campaign
- Data sets on agricultural land grabbing in the world (GRAIN): https://www.grain.org/bulletin_board/entries/4429-new-data-sets-on-land-grabbing
- The Online Public Database on Land Deals – Global Observatory (Land Matrix): http://landmatrix.org/en/
Some interesting Practices
SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC ASPECTS
According to INSEE, in 2007, 73% of Greek households owned their homes (EU average = 65%).
According to the report CECODHAS 2012, the share of housing costs relative to disposable income is 30.2%, which is one of the highest in Europe.
Quality of Housing
Informal Housing / Slum / Homeless
Homeless : In Greece, there has been no national strategy to combat homelessness and initiatives have relied upon NGOs such as Klimaka which has undertaken the most extensive survey on the issue until the recent (and yet to be published) government survey of rough sleeping in Athens. Therefore, the FEANTSA’s Reports do not allow to know the number of homeless.
Following the crisis, given the current economic recession, the unemployment rate and continuing austerity measures plaguing Greece, the housing issue has become one of the most pressing issues to resolve. New phenomena of homelessness and exclusion from decent housing are found throughout the territory.
ROLE OF PUBLIC AUTHORITIES
Definition and situation in 2012
Unlike the rest of EU countries, Greece has no social rental sector. The social housing sector in the country consists of dwellings for home ownership provided at low cost to workers and employees by the workers Housing Organisation (OEk). OEK also provides various forms of housing assistance, such as grants in settlements, loans for purchase, construction, repair, enlarge- ment and completion, rent subsidies, special and pilot programmes for the housing of vulnerable social groups. About 150,065 housing units on average are delivered annually by OEK, accounting for about 95% of the total annual building activity of the public sector.
How does it work ?
Currently the only organisation that provides social housing in settlements all over Greece is OEk, a tri-party organisation operating under the auspices of the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, with its own financial resources.
OEK beneficiaries are workers and employees (including financial immigrants) in the private or public sectors who are insured for wage in a main social security organisation and who make contributions into OEK, as well as pensioners of all these categories.
Source: 2012 CECODHAS Report (3)
Bibliography & Sitography
Video of the association “La Chaîne” : “European Coalition of Housing Rights and the Right to the City in ATHENS 21 and 22 June 2015” (Part 1)
Video of the association “La Chaîne” : “European Coalition of Housing Rights and the Right to the City in ATHENS 21 and 22 June 2015” (Part 2)
Video of the association “La Chaîne” : “European Coalition of Housing Rights and the Right to the City in ATHENS 21 and 22 June 2015” (Part 4)
Video of the association “La Chaîne” : “European Coalition of Housing Rights and the Right to the City in ATHENS 21 and 22 June 2015” (Part 6)
Claims and demands
KλIμαKα (KLIMAKA) = association that works for those who lack a roof. It provides a telephone number which enables citizens to inform the association about the existence of homeless people (a mapping of the phenomenon). It provides immediate information about the existing services (housing – food – health care – legal issues – work). Its objective is also an immediate response for those at risk to prevent them from becoming homeless. Information via the website FEANTSA – Website KλIμαKα – contact them
ΟικοΚοινωνία (OIKOKOINONIA) = nonprofit organization that works to housing, social integration and respect for the rights of Roma people. Among the actions, there is the collection of data on the experiences of these groups of people and organizing events in order to change public policy in this area. Website ΟικοΚοινωνία – contact them
αλληλεγγύης για όλους (SOLIDARITY4ALL) = an association that promotes solidarity as a tool of social resistance in times of crisis. Among the actions implemented by this movement include: medical offices and pharmacies Social – Social kitchens to distribute food – food pantries and self-managed collective land – of barter opportunities – private social progress – places of leisure and alternative culture – groups of legal support – aid to immigrants. PDF from their campaign – Video testimonial: Video – Site Internet