This post is an interview that I did with Shane at Asphalt Paving & Sealing of Virginia Beach. He had a lot to say about the issue which is why I decided to post it with his permission.
Shane is in the business of residential & commercial asphalt as you might have guessed by the name of the company. His favorite type of job is parking lot paving and sealcoating.
Now, for what he had to say during the interview:
I believe that having adequate housing should be a human right of all individuals. Entitlement to shelter is no different that entitlement to water, food and clothing. It is in the best interest of the world and humanity to ensure that every person has a decent and adequate place to sleep in along with the basic needs that are required in order to make this happen.
Government plays an important roll in this subject as they control tax dollars. With proper budgeting and tax distribution, it is possible to initiate a program that would ensure that all individuals in the country receive adequate housing but also implement community work-force programs that would enable financial and personal rehabilitation. After a few years or less of this implementation, these people would be able to get back on their feet, work and contribute to taxes so that others that are under-privileged, are able to enjoy the same benefits and rights.
I do not believe that non-citizens who live in the country should be excluded from the right to be provided with adequate shelter. All of these individuals are in the country for very different reasons. Some are refugees, others and in the process of obtaining residency or citizenship, other are here illegally, some are here for education etc.
It is possible to set up housing programs for refugees and non citizens in general. Programs similar to the one describe above that would require individuals to obtain housing on a conditional basis. This program works similar to a Federal student loan where after completion of courses or graduation, a short grace period is allotted then payments must begin on the loan.
In Virginia for example, there is a non-profit organization named Habitat for Humanity. Through this organization, people are able to obtain free housing, or housing at a very reduced cost. The construction of all houses, include brand new materials and labor provided by volunteers as well as the future homeowner. Furthermore, the aforementioned organization, has several donation centers across the state, where homeowners and contractors, are able to donate brand new or gently used items, that can be used for construction purposes. Examples of these include but are not limited to: Carpet, light and plumbing fixtures, wood, doors, and kitchen appliances. While there are some requirements for qualification, this organization is willing to work with families, in an effort to help them obtain decent and affordable housing. This subsidized program, allows many families dreams, to come true.
Internet access is a right of all Unites States citizens:
I believe that having internet access is the right of all individuals. Internet is currently categorized as media and media falls under the classification of visual entertainment. Entertainment should no longer be a privilege but rather an entitlement of every person.
One of the main reasons why it is important for all communities have free basic access to the internet is due to the positive impact that it would have on education. Another reason, is that it would allow individuals to have fingertip access to many useful resources such as news reports, literature and general world knowledge.
Although some countries such as Untied States, Australia and Canada have begun recognizing that internet access is in fact a privilege, there are many other countries (specially in South America and/or third world countries) who do not share the same views.
It is also important to keep in mind that not all countries have the same technological advances as we do nor the availability of satellite I such remote locations.
Ruling internet access as a right would require many strict regulations to take place as well. Providers would have to be able to ensure personal information protection, adequate speed, adequate satellites etc. This process would also require a commitment on behalf of the users and they would have to abide by established guidelines of proper usage.
In summary, I believe that all Americans, as well as all members of our community, would have the right to internet access, and housing opportunities. Knowledge is fundamental right of every individual, and with it, people are able to progress, learn, and pass information onto others. All persons regardless of gender, race, social-economical status, religious beliefs, and cultural background, deserve a dignified home, protected from weather related threats, and environmental exposure.