Social & Economic rights

Friday, 21 October 2016

Without a Solution for Internally Displaced Persons in Social Housing Apartments in Kraljevo

The problems faced by the tenants of social housing apartments in the settlement “Beranovac” in Kraljevo, built to meet the housing needs of internally displaced persons with the donation of the organisation HELP - Hilfe Zur Selbsthilfe e.V. – Mission in the Republic of Serbia, are still far from being solved.

In fact, after the expiry of the three-year period in which the internally displaced persons, previously the residents of collective centres, lived in the social housing apartments in Kraljevo free of charge, the Municipal Housing Agency (MHA) prescribed that the users of social housing apartments should pay a minimum of EUR 75 in dinar equivalent per household member. In addition, the agreements offered to the tenants by the MHA envisaged the monthly rental in the amount of EUR 1.20 per square metre. Having in mind that a certain number of tenants do not earn any income or are pensioners, beneficiaries of social allowance or temporary assistance for unemployed persons from Kosovo, the fulfillment of contractual obligations was impossible for many of them. By rejecting to sign the unfavourable agreements, the tenants of social housing apartments lost the legal basis of housing and were sued in 2013 by the MHA. The lawsuits were filed against 33 internally displaced families, and court procedures are far from completion. 

In the meantime, the sued residents addressed many public authorities with a plea to solve the current situation by considering the actual circumstances and particularly the social needs of internally displaced persons who live in the disputed apartments. Neither the state nor the City of Kraljevo, in the capacity of the user of the apartments in question, had an interest to consider the problem in the wider context of protection of the rights of internally displaced persons, which is the reason why their only action was to conduct lengthy civil proceedings. 

In such circumstances, the tenants of social housing apartments have been living for three years in uncertainty and in constant fear of eviction. In addition, they are forced to face daily with numerous obstacles in accessing their rights, caused by the fact that they cannot extend their residence at the addresses where they actually reside.

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Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action