The Claude Leon Foundation

CENTRE FOR APPLIED LEGAL STUDIES (CALS)

  
The Claude Leon Foundation supports two legs of the work at CALS. The ‘Environment Programme’ at CALS works towards making the environmental right contained in the Constitution a tangible reality for all who live in South Africa. The Programme adopts as the basic premise of its work that a healthy environment is critical for the development of all people, especially poor and marginalised communities who have limited options in terms of choosing the environment in which they live. In keeping with CALS’ history of rights-based research, advocacy and strategic litigation, the Environment Programme seeks to engage with all those charged with the implementation of the environmental right, as well as those affected by the failure to adequately give effect to it. The work of the Programme is driven by the need to facilitate access to the processes through which communities can be involved in combating unacceptable environmental degradation.

 

The second CALS Programme which has been supported by the Claude Leon Foundation is the ‘Basic Services’ Programme, particularly with regards to the housing rights and eviction work carried out by that Programme. CALS has litigated a number of cases on behalf of inner city occupiers based on the constitutional protection afforded under Section 26 of the Constitution, and has been at the forefront of developing the constitutional jurisprudence in respect of evictions. Through these cases, the courts have determined that prior to any eviction, the City Manager is obliged to undertake meaningful engagement with the occupiers. It is also required to consider, and report to court, on the availability of suitable alternative accommodation for the occupiers, so as to avert the consequence of them being rendered homeless.

  
 

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