Barcelona en Comú sees the nomination of Andrej Holm as State Secretary for Housing in Berlin as an important milestone for the housing rights movement in Europe. Andrej Holm is an anti-gentrification activist and internationally renowned expert on housing markets. He has stood up to speculation and social segregation and proposed real policy solutions to guarantee the right to housing in our cities.
In Berlin, as in Barcelona, the struggle for decent, affordable housing is at the heart of making cities that work for the common good. We can't allow rising rents and speculation to push ordinary people out of our neighbourhoods. This is a global problem and cities must stand together to address it.
That's why we are outraged at the media-driven campaign that is seeking to delegitimize Holm and revoke his appointment based on a tendentious interpretation of his past. This is a predictable expression of vested interests trying to block change when they see a committed activist enter the political arena.
Barcelona en Comú would like to join the International Network for Urban Research and Action (http://www.inura.org/v2/index.php/activities/news/), Kotti and Co, Mietenvolksentscheid, Stadt von Unten, Bizim Kiez, and others, in expressing our support for, and solidarity with, Andrej Holm.
We need allies like Andrej Holm in Berlin and in city halls across the world to fight back against the commodification of our cities.