Mercy Global Action: People and Deep Social Change
Angela Reed rsm (MIA): 'Making "the Shift" on Global Homelessness'

Throughout the world we continue to witness people both individually and collectively who are committed to making deep social change. This is promising for a world so often caught up in traditional practices and ways of seeing things that exclude or isolate others. Society is always evolving and so too its people and practices. Social change involves gaining increased awareness and understanding about an issue or phenomenon; it often involves attitudinal changes and ideally brings about public policy that reflects a just and equitable reality.

We often see signs of deep social change in new language, in cultural practices, in art and in community participation.  We have seen deep social change in relation to the way society understands mental health, addiction, the composition of  family,  human development and  sexuality, to name a few. But we still have a long way to go…

Ms Leliani Farha, the UN Special Rapporteur on adequate housing is leading a global campaign to shift knowledge and understandings about the phenomenon of homelessness.  She recognises homelessness as a global phenomenon that continues to be misunderstood and misrepresented resulting in discrimination, marginalisation and stigmatisation to those rendered homeless. 

Homelessness is an extreme violation of the rights to adequate housing and non-discrimination and often also a violation of the rights to life, to security of person, to health, to protection of the home and family and to freedom from cruel and inhuman treatment. However it has not been addressed with the urgency and priority that ought to be accorded to so widespread and severe a violation of human rights. [1]...


[1] UN Human Rights Council, Report of the Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing as a Component of the Right to an Adequate Standard of Living, and on the Right to Non-Discrimination in This Context, 30 December, 2015 A/HRC/31/54 available at

Download the complete article here (A4) Download the complete article here (US Letter) Descargar el artículo completo (Tamaño de papel A4) Descargar el artículo completo (Tamaño carta, EE. UU.)

Spanish translation using DeepL Translator. Traducción al español con DeepL Translator

Angela Reed rsm is the Team Leader of Mercy Global Action. She is responsible for the Global Action programme of MIA.
Angela supports linkages between the justice programmes of MIA member organisations and ensures Mercy stories are incorporated into international advocacy at the United Nations.

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