Public Defender Applies to Constitutional Court to Declare Rule of Granting Status to Homeless Persons Unconstitutional

According to the Constitution of Georgia, the Public Defender of Georgia has the authority to apply to the Constitutional Court when the basic constitutional rights of certain persons are violated. To this end, the Public Defender of Georgia applied to the Constitutional Court and demanded the repeal of various norms that unconstitutionally restrict the right of homeless people to access adequate housing.

The Public Defender considers that the concept of homelessness established by the disputed legislation is vague and does not reflect all the forms of homelessness, while the rule of registration of homeless persons adopted by local municipalities leaves large part of homeless persons without access to adequate housing.

The constitutional claim appeals against the norms, on the basis of which, persons living in inappropriate conditions, in different places that have no housing function or in dangerous buildings and structures unsuitable for housing are completely excluded from the right to adequate housing; as well as persons living in housing without legal guarantees and at risk of eviction; persons living temporarily with their relatives; and persons that are about to leave institutions, including persons placed in penitentiary institutions, medical facilities and orphanages.

According to the constitutional claim, people who are in extremely difficult social conditions, do not have their own houses and actually need housing from the State, cannot receive homeless status under the existing norms, as a result of which, they lose the opportunity to receive a shelter.

The Public Defender considers that the disputed norms violate the right to dignity guaranteed by the Constitution of Georgia. According to the Constitution of Georgia, the State shall take care of the provision of decent housing to its citizens, which is a manifestation of the principle of a social state.

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