Yet another Czech town bans housing benefits, opposition politician and Romani NGO object
News server Denik.cz reports that the City of Ústí nad Labem has approved a motion by the municipality of Trmice to forbid distribution of state housing benefits to persons newly resident on its territory. Through this measure, Trmice wants to limit any potential increase in the number of its residents who are dependent on welfare.
Currently state housing benefits are banned in several localities of Ústí nad Labem, and in June City Hall requested that the measure be applied to its entire territory, which should take effect on 26 November unless the decision is appealed. "We have found out that speculators are buying single-family homes on our territory and renting them to people who are dependent on welfare. This is happening in locations where originally no such persons were residing. That is what we want to prevent," Mayor Jana Oubrechtová (Mayors and Independents - STAN) told the daily.
According to the mayor, residents currently drawing housing benefits will continue to receive them. "We just want to limit the influx of newcomers who are dependent on welfare," the mayor said for Denik.cz.
The Romani association Romano Jasnica, which works in Trmice, is criticizing this step. "The city has decided and we do not know what impact this will have on invalids, senior citizens and single mothers. We do not know whether this might affect, for example, people who decide to relocate just because they need an apartment of a different size," director Martin Cichý told the daily.
Local opposition politician and Romani community member Martin Bajger (FOR! Trmice - PRO! Trmice) also disagrees with the measures. "Ordinary people are those who will be beaten down by this the most. The opposition is meeting about this and will attempt to come up with a plan. Personally I do not believe this measure will solve this problem. My concern is that the standard of living among impoverished people does not decline further. Maybe this measure will at least prevent the abuse [of the benefit], but only a proper law against these traffickers in poverty can aid the situation," Bajger told Denik.cz.
Such "zones with increased incidence of undesirable phenomena" where new applicants will not be entitled to housing benefits have been already declared or are in the process of being declared by 88 municipalities and towns in 12 regions. In the spring 71 towns and villages already had or were planning to declare such benefit-free zones.
- Czech Republic: 88 cities in 12 regions plan to ban housing benefits in specific zones
- Nonprofits and unions call on Czech PM to put forward social housing law
- Robin Stria, 7th place candidate for the Greens, Brno-střed: The biggest problem in the Czech Republic is housing
- Czech evictees must leave school gym this weekend for housing in socially excluded localities
- Czech Public Defender of Rights calls for social housing law, says media should stop blaming Roma
- Czech research shows 96 % of poorest families in Rapid Re-Housing maintain their housing and improve their health
- Civil society members of Czech Govt Roma Council leave meeting in protest against housing benefit-free zones
- Czech Green Party says current housing crisis involving Romani evictees makes previous ones seem humane by comparison
- Experts from around the globe speak in Czech capital about affordable housing
- Czech village wants to stop housing benefits altogether, plans to buy up apartment buildings
- Czech Labor Minister says lower housing benefits will drive down rents, experts say it will destroy social housing policy
- 71 Czech towns plan to ban housing benefits and make life harder for the poorest of the poor
- Czech Govt to build 55 000 "cells" for the poor, Platform for Social Housing says thousands of new ghettos will result
- Controversial Czech housing estate in the hands of foreign nationals: Russians big fans of trafficking in poverty there
- Czech President Havel protested against the wall separating non-Roma from Roma on Matiční Street 20 years ago
- Pavel Botoš: Who will stop the use of terms like "cigoši" in the Czech Republic?
- Iveta Bílková: Czech society should not tolerate words like "Cigán", "Cigoši", etc.
- Roma are most frequently targeted by hatred on the Czech Internet, experts say the law applies online too
- Czech Govt report on the state of the Romani minority estimates 830 ghettos with 127 000 inhabitants in the regions
- Slovakia: Café Európa discusses underrepresentation of Romani people in politics
- Czech city declares its entire territory a ghetto for harsh housing benefit restrictions - which don't deliver
- Slovak President Zuzana Čaputová has breakfast with Romani students
- VIDEO: Ostentatious homes built by Roma community in Romania reflect their desire for prestige
- Jozef Miker: Those who care about the homeless in the Czech Republic are bringing them food for free
- Slovak homeowner considers selling to Roma, so his neighbors graffiti his house and puncture his tires
- Prague City Council disagrees with Czech bill to consolidate two housing benefits into one