Habitat for Humanity encourages United Nations to maintain focus on housing and land in Post-2015 Agenda

ATLANTA (April 2, 2014) – Fueled by more than three decades of witnessing the holistic improvements that adequate housing provides to individuals and communities alike, Habitat for Humanity is urging the United Nation’s Open Working Group (OWG) for Sustainable Development to maintain a focus on adequate and affordable housing in upcoming deliberations about the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

“We’re encouraged that the Open Working Group has continued to recognize the importance of eradicating and preventing slum conditions, increasing access to property rights and providing adequate and affordable housing,” said Liz Blake, general counsel and senior vice president of advocacy and government affairs of Habitat for Humanity International. “Given the immense impact of housing and shelter-related factors on development outcomes, it is imperative that the OWG prioritize these issues as they consolidate general themes and craft measurable targets in the months ahead.”

The 10th meeting of the U.N.’s OWG on Sustainable Development, which began in New York City on March 31 and will conclude April 4, is an opportunity for OWG members to respond to the eight thematic clusters proposed by the Group’s co-chairs. These discussions will contribute to the eventual revamping of the Millennium Development Goals, which expire in 2015.

“A Sustainable Development Goal addressing sustainable cities, which must include a focus on housing and land, seems to be closer to reality than ever before,” said Chris Vincent, Habitat for Humanity International’s director of congressional relations. “Between now and the expected release of the OWG’s influential report over the summer, it is more important than ever for advocates supporting adequate housing for low-income families, along with all other supporters of an SDG on sustainable cities, to remain engaged. The next months are critical as the OWG drafts and debates what the new Post-2015 Agenda will include.”

The Post-2015 Agenda will be among the major focal points at next week’s World Urban Forum in Medellín, Colombia, where several Habitat for Humanity International housing and community building experts will participate, including Habitat CEO Jonathan Reckford, who will introduce the Civil Society Organizations Roundtable.

About Habitat for Humanity International
Habitat for Humanity International’s vision is a world where everyone has a decent place to live. Anchored by the conviction that housing provides a critical foundation for breaking the cycle of poverty, Habitat has helped more than 4 million people construct, rehabilitate or preserve homes since 1976. Habitat also advocates to improve access to decent and affordable shelter and supports a variety of funding models that enable families with limited resources to make needed improvements on their homes as their time and resources allow. As a nonprofit Christian housing organization, Habitat works in more than 70 countries and welcomes people of all races, religions and nationalities to partner in its mission. To learn more, donate or volunteer visit habitat.org.