A Case for Universal State Housing in Aotearoa New Zealand
Keywords:gentrification, social futures, housing crisis, privatisation, public housing
In contemporary debates about solutions to the housing crisis in Aotearoa New Zealand, state housing is side-lined. But there have been renewed calls internationally for expanding state provision of housing. Some of these calls have been to expand the criteria of access to state housing to make it more universal, ensuring everyone has a home and challenging housing as an investment. This article presents a case for universal state housing in Aotearoa New Zealand. It explores nine main benefits that a universal state-housing policy could bring to Aotearoa New Zealand, including creating more affordable housing, towns, and cities, more secure housing, combating gentrification, displacement, and stigma, and making housing more democratic, environmentally sustainable, and accessible. This article is an act of imagining—the seeding of an idea to start conversations—not a blueprint for how things should be.