新型コロナウイルスが顕在化させた住宅コスト オーストラリアでの公営住宅増強の提言

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公開日:2020/05/12/最終更新日:2020/10/20

メルボルン大学の研究者らが、新型コロナウイルスによる住宅コスト負担の改善を求める提言を公開した(以下、抄訳)。

  • 新型コロナウイルスによる経済の甚大な混乱は、経済補償が錯覚であったことを明らかにした。
    筆者らによると、そのうち最も脆弱であったのが、家庭にとって一番の出費である、住宅コストだ。このような状況下にもかかわらず、住宅コストは通常通りの収入に依存している。新型コロナウイルスは、オーストラリアの公営住宅不足を顕在化させた。
  • また財務省は、新型コロナウイルスの影響で、オーストラリアの失業者が約70万から140万に急増すると予測した。その多くがJob Keeper Paymentの対象外である日雇い労働者は、今なおホームレス化する深刻なリスクに対面している。
    失業手当への援助支出、住宅ローンの6か月間の凍結、特定の賃貸への立ち退き勧告の禁止など、政府・銀行はすぐに対策を講じているものの、一方でこれらの一時的な措置は、個々人の収入の不安定さに対しては、単なるバンドエイドでしかない。
  • そこで筆者らは、他の解決策として、連邦および州当局が失業者に公営住宅と「参加収入」にアクセスできる機会を設けるよう提案している。
  • プログラムへの参加者には、地域社会での毎週15時間の奉仕活動と引き換えに、駅度な生活賃金が支払われる。
    この活動には、食物の栽培、近隣環境の維持、地域バンクなどの共有スキームの運用支援、専門家の指導下での新居の建設などがある。生活賃金の支払いと上記の奉仕活動は、失業手当や求職義務に取って代わる。
  • この提案は、土地(空気や水も同様)は市場でつくられたのではなく、商品であってはならない、という基本原理に基づいている。住宅用地へアクセスすることは、土地を購入できる人だけではなく、すべての人々がもつ人権である。
  • 筆者らの提案は、共有の土地をベースに、過去に戻るのではなく、新しい未来を想像することである。このように公営住宅と運用スキームを整備することで、公営住宅に住む失業者を最初に巻き込みながら、新しい土地管理の取り決めを適切に拡大して、経済全体に影響を及ぼす、と主張されている。

詳細はこちら

Coronavirus shows housing costs leave many insecure. Tackling that can help solve an even bigger crisis

2020/05/11/The Conversation


記事の原文は、クリエイティブコモンズライセンス(CC BY-ND 4.0)のもとで公開されています。

Coronavirus shows housing costs leave many insecure. Tackling that can help solve an even bigger crisis

Sam Mooy/AAP

Samuel Alexander, University of Melbourne and Alex Baumann, Western Sydney University

The massive economic disruption brought by COVID-19 has revealed that for many, economic security is an illusion. And our biggest vulnerability is housing costs – the biggest expense for most households.

This fact is pertinent when we consider the crucial task of how to create a more resilient and sustainable economy after the crisis.

We mustn’t forget COVID-19 is actually a crisis within a much bigger and more complex crisis – climate change and environmental degradation.

But housing costs make many of us utterly dependent on a return to business-as-usual, despite the catastrophic environmental consequences.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Friday flagged the first stage in loosened coronavirus restrictions, expected to boost Australia’s economy by more than A$3 billion a month.

But we believe bouncing back to a path of untrammelled economic growth is no solution at all.

The coronavirus has highlighted the economic insecurity of many.
Loren Elliott/Reuters

A tragic paradox

Rich nations such as Australia must permanently reduce and stabilise economic growth – and with it, resource and energy demands – to maintain a liveable planet.

But here lies the tragic paradox. How can we deliberately orchestrate an economic slowdown, when the COVID-19 experience has caused so much personal pain and left many unable to pay rent and bills?




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Treasury forecasts suggest unemployment in Australia will jump from around 700,000 to 1.4 million as a result of COVID-19. Casuals, many of whom are not eligible for the JobKeeper payments, are already at serious risk of becoming homeless.

Governments and banks have taken immediate steps to keep people afloat, such as stimulus spending on unemployment benefits, a six-month freeze on mortgage repayments and a ban on certain rental evictions.

These stopgap measures show the emerging housing crisis is unprecedented and serious – but they are merely band-aid solutions to personal economic insecurity.

What’s more, they ignore the obvious environmental devastation wrought by a growing economy. It’s clear we must look for other solutions.

Public housing offers a new way

We propose that federal and state authorities offer unemployed people the opportunity to access public housing and a “participation income”.

The voluntary program would first be offered to eligible people either living in public housing, or at the top of the waiting list. If a pilot proved successful, and as public housing investment increased, the program could be offered more widely.

Participants would be paid a modest living wage in exchange for about 15 hours of local community service each week. This work could include growing food, maintaining the neighbourhood, helping to run sharing schemes such as a community tool bank, or even building new homes under expert guidance.




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The payment and associated activities would replace a person’s unemployment benefits and job-seeking obligations.

Such a program would provide a secure home and livelihood to the poorest members of society. It would also provide real-world examples of alternative ways of meeting basic human needs, and governing access to land.

This proposal is built on the basic premise that land (just like air and water) was not created by the market and so should not be a commodity. Access to land for housing should be a human right granted to all, not just to those who can afford it.

New grounds for idealism

A scheme such as ours could show how people are liberated from their reliance on economic growth when land is not commodified.

Urban commons, such as the R-Urban project in Paris, demonstrate how everyday citizens can create an alternative economy. There, several hundred people co-manage land that includes a small farm for collective use, a recycling plant and cooperative eco-housing.




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This is not a new concept. Local collaboration on common land is humanity’s oldest and most widespread mode of economic operation. For First Australians, it underpinned their way of life for tens of thousands of years.

And in Britain, people lived and locally collaborated on common land for many thousands of years before it became privatised.

Our proposal is about creating new futures based on common land, not a return to the past. It would initially involve the unemployed in public housing. But it could be expanded to include others alienated from the market: victims of the automation of jobs, the globalisation of labour – such as manufactured goods being increasingly produced in developing nations – or the decline in polluting industries such as fossil fuels.

The R-Urban project in Paris, which includes a small farm.
Flickr

We need a new ‘golden age’ for public housing

Scaling up new land governance arrangements to the point where they influence the broader economy would require a huge expansion in public housing.

COVID-19 has highlighted Australia’s public housing shortage. Social welfare advocates, unions and the building industry have recognised the problem.

Reserve Bank governor Phillip Lowe says Australia must exploit low interest rates to invest in infrastructure. The stimulus following the Great Depression and the end of World War II offers a precedent: it led to the “golden age” of Australian public housing.

We call on governments to be innovative and ambitious. Building a more resilient and sustainable future requires the courage to experiment with new housing and living arrangements. Now is the time to act.The Conversation

Samuel Alexander, Research fellow, Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, University of Melbourne and Alex Baumann, Casual Academic, School of Social Sciences & Psychology, Western Sydney University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.