Tag Archives: housing

Property unfit for human habitation – compulsory purchase order (Case Comment)

Keywords

Housing;Human rights;Clearance orders; Compulsory purchase; Houses; Protection of property; Right to respect for private and family life

Abstract

Reports on the Administrative Court decision in R. (on the application of Baker) v First Secretary of State challenging a compulsory purchase order made in respect of a seriously fire damaged house in respect of which the local authority had previously served 11 notices on public health issues. Considers whether there were any real alternatives to the making of a compulsory purchase order, given that the house was no longer fit for human habitation and posed a risk to the safety of the occupant and her immediate neighbours. Discusses whether due account was taken of the relevant circulars and whether the compulsory purchase order was a proportionate response having balanced the claimant’s individual human rights against the public interest.

Citation

(2004, Jun.) Journal of Planning & Environment Law 729-741

Case Comment

Property unfit for human habitation – compulsory purchase order

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Stormy Weather: The Challenge of Climate Change and Displacement. (D. Corlett)

Author

David Corlett.

Keywords

IPCC; climate change; drought; flooding; famine; vulnerability; displacement; global warming; ‘climate refugees’; involuntary migration.

Abstract

Climate change is predicted to dislocate millions of people in regions already vulnerable to economic, political and environmental disruption. Already some communities, notably Pacific Islanders, are under direct threat of displacement due to climate-related factors. Stormy Weather looks at the effects of climate change as experienced by the people of Tuvalu, a tiny, picturesque Pacific nation. It looks at how the international community should respond to climate-related migration in Asia, the Pacific and Africa, and argues that Australia – in a region in which 60 per cent of the world’s population lives and where the human implications of climate change will be played out – has a particular interest in ensuring that this new challenge is met.

Citation

David Corlett, Stormy Weather: The Challenge of Climate Change and Displacement (University of New South Wales, Sydney, 2008)

Paper

Stormy Weather: The Challenge of Climate Change and Displacement.

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Justiciability of Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: Should There Be an International Complaints Mechanism to Adjudicate the Rights to Food, Water, Housing, and Health? (Michael J. Dennis and David P. Stewart)

Author(s)

Michael J. Dennis and David P. Stewart

Keywords

Economic, social, culture, rights, human rights, food, water, housing, health

Abstract

This article aims to contribute to the task from several perspectives. First, we review the proposal and the views that have been presented by the Independent Expert and in the Working Group. We next examine the relevant negotiating background of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and the two Covenants in order to assess the validity of some of the arguments put forward in support of a new complaints mechanism. We survey some of the Committee’s recent interpretive pronouncements, including on key aspects of the right to an adequate standard of living set forth in ICESCR Article 11 (specifically the rights to housing, food, and water) and the right to health under Article 12, in order to discern the likely leanings of the Committee under a complaints mechanism. We also examine the likely impact of the proposal on the work of various specialized agencies and identify some of the practical difficulties facing the operation of such a mechanism.

Our investigation leads us to question the proposal for an optional protocol on several levels. While shopworn opposition to economic, social, and cultural rights on “ideological” grounds should be abandoned, the argument that a new international adjudicative mechanism is necessary in order to validate those rights proceeds from equally dubious contentions. Formalistic demands that economic, social, and cultural rights must be treated the same as civil and political rights, and must therefore be “justiciable” in the same sense, are equally flawed. That case has not been made.

From the outset, and for good reason, economic, social, and cultural rights, unlike civil and political rights, have been defined primarily as aspirational goals to be achieved progressively. The drafters of the UDHR and the two Covenants well understood the difficulties and obstacles relating to justiciability. The decision to put the two sets of rights in different treaties with different supervisory mechanisms was well considered, and the underlying reasons for those distinctions and decisions appear to remain valid today. Their different treatment in no way disqualified economic, social, and cultural rights as rights or relegated them to a lower hierarchical rung. It did reflect an assessment of the practical difficulties that states would face in implementing generalized norms requiring substantial time and resources.

Citation

(2004) 98 American Journal of International Law 462

Paper

Justiciability of Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights: Should there be an International Complaints Mechanism to Adjudicate the Rights to Food, Water, Housing, and Health?

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