Monitoring Enjoyment of the Rights to Adequate Housing and Health Care and Protection in Aotearoa New Zealand

326 Pages Posted: 11 Nov 2021

See all articles by Livvy Mitchell

Livvy Mitchell

Motu Research

Paddy Baylis

Claremont Colleges - Pomona College

Susan Randolph

University of Connecticut - Department of Economics

Date Written: September 19, 2021

Abstract

This study evaluates how well the New Zealand Government is complying with its obligations under the International Covenant for Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) regarding the right to adequate housing and the right to health care and protection. This study is novel in that it is the first study to extensively use quantitative performance indicators in addition to several qualitative indicators. While we find some areas of compliance for both the right to adequate housing and the right to health care and protection, the study reveals serious and significant violations of the ICESCR. The structural indicators reveal pervasive breaches in the New Zealand Government’s commitment to respect each right, while the process and outcome indicators reveal breaches in the New Zealand Government’s commitment to protect and fulfil each right. In particular, we find: (1) the two rights are not explicitly and fully recognised in domestic laws or in strategic plans, policies and measures; (2) well over half of the indicators examined reveal breaches in the obligations to use the maximum of available resources to ensure the two rights; (3) fewer than half the indicators evaluated show compliance with the obligation to progressively realise the two rights; (4) all but two of the indicators used to evaluate the New Zealand Government’s compliance with its minimum core obligations reveal breaches; (5) a sizable number of the indicators evaluated show breaches of non-retrogression—that is, reductions in the percentage of the population enjoying the rights; and finally, (6) there is evidence of serious and persistent structural, direct, and indirect discrimination among many population subgroups and especially between Māori and non-Māori.

Note: Funding: This research was funded by the New Zealand Human Rights Commission

Declaration of Interests: None to declare.

Keywords: Right to housing; right to health; Human Rights Law; International Covenant for Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights; Social Rights; freedoms; Human Development; Entitlements; Well Being; Capabilities; Social Policy; New Zealand; Public Expenditure; Health; Welfare; Economic Development

JEL Classification: K380, H53, I15, I18, I31, I38, O15, O56

Suggested Citation

Mitchell, Livvy and Baylis, Paddy and Randolph, Susan, Monitoring Enjoyment of the Rights to Adequate Housing and Health Care and Protection in Aotearoa New Zealand (September 19, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3926831 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3926831

Livvy Mitchell (Contact Author)

Motu Research ( email )

Level 1, 93 Cuba Street
P.O. Box 24390
Wellington, 6142
New Zealand

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.motu.nz/about-us/people/livvy-mitchell/

Paddy Baylis

Claremont Colleges - Pomona College ( email )

Claremont, CA 91711
United States

Susan Randolph

University of Connecticut - Department of Economics ( email )

365 Fairfield Way, U-1063
Storrs, CT 06269-1063
United States

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