Women Headed Families in Underserve Settlements and Housing in Colombo Sri Lanka

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Introduction Gender inequality is a common phenomenon in planning in both western and eastern countries. Many researchers have pointed out the women injustice in planning in relations to housing, infrastructures, city safety, recreation etc. Importance of the inclusion of women headed families in planning can be seen in very limited studies or only in micro researches. Primarily this is because of their hidden visibility and this invisibility eventually let them excluded in planning. In the Sri Lankan context, generally male are consider as the head of the family and women headed families are often become marginalized. Planners responsibility is understand and respond to diverse needs and aspirations of different individuals and communities (Thompson, 2010). 2.0 Issue Analysis 2.1 Background According to Benschop (2004, p.1), “one third of the world’s women is homeless or lives in inadequate housing”. In comparison to other planning provision i.e. transportation, recreation housing is directly associated with women. Fernando (1985, p.2) stated that, “Although women are the major users of housing, they tend to be excluded from the housing process, from planning and their participation usually begins where the housing project ends - in the maintenance of housing stock”. The general opinion of housing and housing affordability basically recognized as a matter of men rather than women. Because men are the most visible group dealing with housing finance and often women have to depend on men to finance housing due to their less earning in comparison to men. This condition further exacerbated by women exclusion from access to land. The ultimate result of these issues let them to settle in underserve settlements in urban areas which w... ... middle of paper ... ... National Housing Development Authority (2014).Programmes, Viewed 30th March 2014 Niriella, N. C.,(n.d.). Critical Issues of low-income dwellers in Urban Planning, Viewed 30th March 2014 Thompson, S. (2010). Planning for Diverse Communities. In S.Thompson (Ed) Planning Australia: An Overview of Urban and Regional Planning. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Samaratunga, T., O, D., Hare, (2013). Reflections on Over 100 Years of Urban Housing Policies in Sri Lanka, Social Sciences. Vol. 2, pp. 14-21, Viewed 30th March 2014 Sevanatha, 2003, The case of Colombo Sri Lanka, Urban resource Centre, Viewed May 2013

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