Dr Gauri Nandedkar of the Building Better Homes, Cities, and Towns has released their research on the construction of media narratives surrounding housing and homelessness throughout the first 6 months of the Covid-19 pandemic in Aotearoa. Access to warm, dry, and safe homes became a key tool in a coordinated public health effort to stop the transmission of Covid-19 when in lockdown.
The research found the “mainstream media rarely made connections between public health strategies to manage Covid-19 and the state of housing, and persistently treated housing as primarily an aspect of the property market…These
throw into sharp relief a media discourse treating housing as a vehicle for investment and wealth accumulation and a more marginalised media discourse that focuses on the use value of housing and the rights of people to secure wellbeing through decent housing. In a pandemic response in which housing is a critical tool in maintaining a first line of defence against Covid 19, the lack of secure and decent housing for many reflects a disconnect in health policy response and the reality of housing unaffordability and precarity.”
Read the full report here: https://www.buildingbetter.nz/publications/homes_spaces/Nandedkar_Nov2021_Covid-19_media_constructions_of_housing_home.pdf