Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
European section of United Cities and Local Governments

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Sustainable territorial and local development

Housing and Urban Development - 14.11.2023

Addressing Europe's Housing Crisis: an Open Letter to EU Ministers
Amidst Europe's deepening housing crisis, characterised by a scarcity of suitable, reasonably priced, and sufficient housing, CEMR, Eurocities, Housing Europe, the International Union of Tenants, and SOLIDAR have come together in an open letter directed at the European Union Ministers overseeing the dossier. These ministers are convening on November 13-14 in Gijón to discuss Housing and Urban Development, and to adopt the Gijón Declaration on sustainable, healthy, and inclusive housing.
The housing crisis gripping Europe is not confined to vulnerable groups. It now engulfs middle-income households, including essential workers like police officers, teachers, and nurses, who are priced out of the market. The challenges extend to young adults unable to leave their parents' homes and those confronted with sudden housing needs due to life changes. Against this backdrop, CEMR and the other signatory organisations emphasise the urgency for EU action, advocating for increased investment in the housing sector to address the pressing issues affecting citizens, the economy, and the environment.
The recommendations in the open letter underscore the need for comprehensive reforms, particularly the revision of the Services of General Economic Interest (SGEI) Decision 2012. The signatories welcome the call to redefine social housing, aligning it with a modern concept of affordable housing for all. As advocates for local and regional authorities, cities, housing providers, tenants, and social welfare organisations, CEMR and the other signatories stress the imperative for continued monitoring of EU policies relevant to housing. 
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