Netanyahu’s Spin on the National Housing Committees Law

Housing rights protest in Tel Aviv. Oren Ziv, Activestills

The Association for Responsible Planning and the Affordable Housing Coalition, in response to today’s discussion at the Joint Knesset Committee for the National Housing Committees (NHCs) Law: “Instead of offering real solutions, the government is providing media spins; the government coalition representatives have rejected all practical suggestions for the inclusion of affordable housing in the NHCs Law.”
Members of the Association for Responsible Planning and the Affordable Housing Coalition, who participated in the Knesset discussion of the NHCs Law, have expressed anger and disappointment at the government’s refusal to adopt real solutions to promote affordable housing: “The Knesset committee only supported the inclusion of general statements in the law, even though experience has taught us that such statements change almost nothing. The law proposal must be withdrawn for an extensive revision, which will ensure true affordable housing.”
For a position paper about affordable housing in Israel, click here.
Despite statements made by Prime Minister Netanyahu and by MK Carmel Shama (Chairperson of the joint committee), during today’s discussion the committee rejected all operative suggestions for the promotion of affordable housing within the NHCs Law. The only amendment that the MKs agreed to approve is a paragraph stating that the NHCs “could” promote affordable housing – but without detailing what means the committees will have in order to do so. Such an amendment will bring no real change, despite previous statements made by the government.
The committee has also decided to further harm open and agricultural lands: It accepted a government proposal according to which when a plan that contradicts a regional plan to preserve open lands comes up for discussion in the NHC, it will not have to go through the Committee for the Preservation of Open and Agricultural Lands, as is currently the law. This proposal will cause further harm to public open lands.
The Coalition for Affordable Housing and The Association for Responsible Planning call on Members of Knesset to show accountability and to pass a comprehensive revision to the National Housing Committees Law with the goal of promising real detailed solutions to the housing crisis. Affordable Housing is not an empty slogan, it is policy that needs to be advanced, and the government is not currently doing so.
Attorney Gil Gan-Mor, Coordinator of ACRI’s Right to Housing Project: “Unsurprisingly, instead of promoting affordable housing, they are promoting more hot air. This is not the way to draft legislation that will have an impact on-the-ground. In other examples of building and zoning laws where only general declarations were made, there was almost no actual change. In order to actually affect substantive change, it is necessary to legally set a system of rules, regulations, and incentives that will require contractors to build affordable housing and public housing. What was decided today in the Knesset committee is nothing more than a spin.”
Nir Papay, Society for Protection of Nature: “We are talking about another problematic threat to rapidly disappearing open lands, and their transfer from public property into private hands. The harm that these plans will bring to agricultural and public spaces will last a great many years to come.”
Avi Dabush, Shatil: “The spins of the Netanyahu government amount to one uber-spin: this law. In the event that it actually affects something, that something will be luxury condos. Zero affordable housing, zero public housing, zero public involvement. The struggle has become a social just struggle, and the National Housing Committees Law represents the exact opposite.”

  • Print
  • email
  • RSS
  • Tumblr
  • Reddit
  • Twitter
  • Facebook

Categories: Housing Rights, Privatization, Social and Economic Rights, Tent Protest

Tags: |

Comments are closed.