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Transitional Justice in Housing Injustice: Housing Rights Violations Within Settler Democracies

By: Manal Totry-Jubran


The right to housing is recognized by international human rights treaties as an integral part of the right to an adequate standard of living. Many states have ratified these treaties and incorporated protection of some aspects of housing rights into their constitutions and domestic legislation. Other states have not enacted any legislation in recognition of housing rights, but they provide judicial remedies for violations of rights. Despite that, domestic and international reports indicate that housing rights are constantly being violated in countries across the world at different levels.

This Article focuses on housing rights violations within “settler democracies.” Such countries share common features of housing rights violations including unequal distribution of land, forced evictions, massive expropriations, crowdedness, and housing demolitions within indigenous localities. Such violations are a result of structural and continued discriminatory spatial policies embedded in state legal and political systems. This Article asserts that housing rights violations should be addressed through the transitional justice theory and mechanisms that address the root causes of the systematic housing


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