Victory for Public Housing

For the past three years, Shatil’s Public Housing Forum has been working tirelessly — together with the Knesset’s Housing Lobby headed by Joint List MK Dov Khenin and Yisrael Beiteinu MK Orly Levy-Abekasis — to persuade the government to pass legislation that would promote transparency and crack down on corruption in public housing companies. On March 16, the bill was approved by the influential Knesset Finance Committee, and is expected to gain government support.

The law will demand that public housing companies make information on the rights of public housing residents more accessible. Public housing companies will be required to send their tenants accessible, easy-to-read reports twice a year that show payments, debts, how the rent was determined, how they can appeal, and more.

By making all of this information clear and accessible, this law will make it much harder for public housing companies to take advantage of some of Israel’s most marginalized citizens.

“This is a remarkable achievement,” said Shatil advocacy expert, Danny Gigi. “The Forum has been working on the passage of this law day and night. It will put an end to the continuing corruption of the housing companies, including debt inflation, giving public housing apartments to organizations that don’t qualify for them, disinformation, theft during renovations, and more improprieties. It will make a huge difference in the lives of people who most need it.”

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April 2016