The Entrenched Legacy of Housing Segregation in Cape Town
Like many global metropolises, Cape Town faces conflicts over how to secure housing rights for low- and middle-income households inflected by histories of racist social engineering. Cape Town’s situation is complicated by the legacy of housing apartheid in South Africa, which continues to render historically white-only neighborhoods financially inaccessible for many black households and threatens to uproot others as the high tide of gentrification approaches. A number of media outlets have recently examined the persistence of housing segregation in the city and political and guerrilla efforts to promote inclusive urban planning and secure affordable housing rights for black Capetonians.
A once exclusively and now predominantly Cape Malay neighborhood in Cape Town, Bo-Kaap has become an attractive site for South Africans and foreigners of all backgrounds looking for cheaper residential alternatives in Cape Town’s revitalized downtown. While the neighborhood survived the apartheid-era banishment of non-white South Africans from the city, it now faces an identity crisis as gentrification encroaches upon the cultural integrity of the area, including religious life and property ownership. The New York Times reports on the history of the neighborhood and residents’ attitudes towards changes over the last two decades.
Black students at South Africa’s preeminent universities have taken to protesting the slow pace of diversification in the institutions. Gaining momentum at schools like the University of Cape Town and Stellenbosch, the movement has taken up issues ranging from affirmative action to faculty hiring, with students engaging in sit-ins, readings, and demonstrations to draw attention to the overwhelmingly disproportionate racial demographics and culture of South African universities. The New York Times profiles students leading the way for change and the challenges facing the movement.
One byproduct of China’s increasing political and economic interest in the African continent has been growth in Chinese tourism to African countries. As a result, tour services like those provided by Hanna Han, a Chinese national living in South Africa, have become invaluable as tourists seek a package of interrelated services, including tours, translation and interpretation, and advice. CCTV Africa learns more about how Han came to work in Cape Town and her perspective on the booming Chinese tourism industry in South Africa.
Cape Town campaign brings HIV testing to busy public spaces
The Target 5000 Campaign has set up mobile tents at Cape Town’s main train station, where nurses conduct screenings for HIV, tuberculosis, and diabetes and counselors provide sexual health information and tools.
Coordinators target busy public spaces such as train stations, shopping malls, and taxi stands to maximize convenience and visibility in a nation that still sees individuals falling through the crack as infection rates fall.
The campaign aims to get 5,000 tested in three months as a part of its work towards UNAIDS’ 90-90-90 targets for 90% of people with HIV to know their status, 90% of positive individuals to be receiving antiretroviral treatment, and 90% of those receiving treatment to have viral suppression by 2020.
“It’s been fantastic. People are getting tested who wouldn’t typically go to a clinic for an HIV test. Over half of the people who have come to get tested are men. Many young people and people who are not aware of any signs or symptoms of disease are popping in. We’re providing early case detection and linkage to HIV care.”