Over the past six years average rents in Rome have risen by 139 per cent according to a report by Cresme, the Centro ricerche economiche, sociali e di mercato per ledilizia. The increase in Rome has far outstripped those in other major Italian cities; Catania was second with a 105 per cent rise and Turin was third with 92 per cent while the national average was a not inconsiderable 49 per cent. The report, A New Housing and Social Policy for Rome, was presented to the city mayor, Walter Veltroni, as a contribution to the ongoing search for a response to the housing crisis in the Italian capital. Veltroni called the problem Italys social emergency and one which is being compounded by growing wealth disparity and increased immigration. Rome has 273 homeless families, another 21,000 are flat sharing in cramped conditions with other families and 9,165 face eviction. The report calls for a revision of the laws regulating rents and the construction of more public housing as possible countermeasures.
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