On December 14, Civic Chamber Members Yelena Topoleva
and Boris Altshuler
held negotiations with the Moscow Department of Housing Policy and Housing Facilities and representatives of the hunger-strike who were joined by several mothers of many children from Moscow. They claimed that the Moscow Government cheated them: it promised to provide them with subsidies for housing acquisition and has not fulfilled its promise up until now.
Officials from the Department sent a Reference Letter to the Civic Chamber which says that “the issue of subsidies for housing for families with many children will be considered under the frames of budget financing for FY 2013 in the priority order based on the date of registration in the housing register and with consideration of the date of submitting application, in strict correspondence with the Laws of the Russian Federation and the City of Moscow.”
The document pointed that participants of the hunger-strike have actually been acknowledged as people in need for improvement of housing conditions. However, there are many other persons put on the affordable housing waiting list for subsidies earlier than them.
“… prior to E.A. Maldon’s family, there are 2520 families, of those 520 are families with many children. Prior to the family of K.S. Slednev (M.A. Tsatsayeva) there are 2384 families, of those 384 are families with many children. Prior to L.A. Tikhomirova’s family, there are 2372 families on the waiting list, of those 400 are families with many children. All these families are eligible for the same measures of social support as families of Maldon, Slednev, and Tikhonova.”
Besides this, the Reference Letter claimed that families with many children participating in the hunger-strike have applied for subsidies relatively recently: in March-May of 2012. At the same time, the Reference Letter did not indicate how many persons were registered in the affordable housing waiting list prior to the families of Maldons, Slednevs, and Tikhonovs.
In the opinion of the Reference Letter authors from the Moscow Department of Housing Policy and Housing Facilities, “declaration of the hunger-strike is an attempt to intimidate the executive authority bodies with the purpose to receive social assistance in the form of housing subsidies in the out-of-turn and unlawful order which violates rights of the families registered in the affordable housing waiting list prior to families which have declared the hunger strike.”
At the same time, the hunger strikers claimed that they were promised to be provided with subsidies already in 2012. Activists asserted that there are about 200 of such “cheated” families in Moscow.
“We need to understand if the fact of changing the order on the waiting list has actually taken place. For that, we are going to request full lists of persons on the affordable housing waiting lists as of the beginning and the end of 2012,” CC Member Yelena Topoleva said. “It is very well possible that the budget funds allocated from the city budget were just insufficient to provide for all families in need. We’ll look into the matter.”
Subsidies are provided to all citizens of Moscow acknowledged as families in need of improvement of housing conditions in accordance with the Moscow Law #29 of June 14, 2006 ”On Provision of the Moscow Citizens’ Right for Living Premises.”
In 2012-2014, 10104.1 million rubles were allocated for these purposes. All funds allocated in 2012, according to the officials from the Moscow Department of Housing Policy and Housing Facilities, have been spent in full.”