Under international human rights law, secure tenure is one of the seven components of the human right to adequate housing, which again is linked to the right to land. The other six components of this human right are:
- availability of services, materials, facilities and infrastructure
- location and
- cultural adequacy
The right to adequate housing is laid down in Article 11(1) of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. The right to property is a human right that is laid down in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Together with the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, these two International Covenants form the “International Bill of Human Rights”. All human rights apply equally to women and men and discrimination on the basis of sex is prohibited by the International Bill of Human Rights and other international human rights instruments, such as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). Women’s equal rights to adequate housing, land and property are firmly entrenched in international law.