Ideas, strategies and projects that give rise to pilot projects. They tackle the challenges raised by the stakeholders involved and which are found in particular places in Barcelona or Medellín.
The difficult economic situation over the last few years has caused housing emergencies. This has made it necessary for the Council to reconsider its public-housing policies and speed up the mechanisms at its disposal to give short-term responses to the situations of the more vulnerable, as well as to re-think the long-term strategies and priorities of these housing policies.
For the long term, the Empenta Plan was created to ensure the availability of land, boost private investment for extending the range of affordable housing on offer and provide continuity to the City Council's building of social housing.
To deal with situations of vulnerability, the City Council has restructured its existing mechanisms and created specific new ones to deal with housing evictions. The network of housing offices have beefed up their role as mediators between those involved in disputes over not only mortgage debts but also rent payments, while notably increasing the legal advice provided through specialist lawyers. Financial assistance aimed at protecting people from losing their homes has also been increased. The more than 32 million euros provided for helping to pay rent and 4.4 million euros for paying off accumulated debts are just two the figures testifying to the seriousness of the situation.
However, despite the aid given to protect people from losing their homes, there have still been evictions in the city, requiring the application of specific care mechanisms. These include temporary shelters to provide as normal an environment as possible until permanent accommodation is found, financial aid for rent payments or directly-awarded housing to people who have been evicted from their homes, through an Emergency Committee.
Over 1000 people have stayed in shelters set up over the last few years and nearly 1000 families have been awarded social rented housing through the Emergency Committee.
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