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Bangkok, 9 Oct 12

National Union of Low Income Community Organizations, FRSN and LOCOA submitting petitions and UN ESCAP and UN-Habitat Officials reading statements

Bangkok World Habitat Day was marked by peaceful marches of two groups to the United Nations building.

Some  7,000 slum dwellers participated in the march. UN representatives read out the messages of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and of UN-Habitat's Executive Director Dr. Joan Clos.

The marchers submitted petitions to the UN on the need for action to make certain that all governments in Asia have pro-poor national housing policies that guarantee that the poor have access to secure land for housing, provide for sufficient budgets to be allocated for housing the poor, and mandate people's participation in disaster mitigation measures which shall not negatively impact the poor.

Marchers condemned evictions in the region and reiterated that "Changing Cities" must not be cities without the urban poor, just as "Building Opportunities" must be based on acceptance of the notion that adequate and secure housing is the cornerstone for a better future for the urban poor.

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