A roof is a right
Housing, and social housing in particular, is a major issue that affects and will continue to affect thousands of Canadians. Combatting homelessness also involves increasing the number of social housing units available in communities.
From 2006 to 2013, almost 45,000 social housing units were affected by expiring agreements. In 2017, that number will reach more than 140,000. Despite this, the current government, like the previous Conservative government, has not announced whether it will renew the amounts associated with these agreements.
Long-term investment needs in social housing
In its 2016 budget, the government announced $30 million over two years to maintain rent subsidies. This temporary and clearly insufficient amount covers only part of the agreements, considering that by the time these agreements expire around 2040, $1.7 billion will have been slashed from social housing funding, an amount equal to 85% of CMHC’s budget.
That’s why the NDP is calling on the federal government to invest the funds needed to build new social housing units. Motion M-53 introduced by Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet also calls on the government to renew long-term social housing operating agreements, in order to preserve rent subsidies and provide funds for necessary renovations.
A Pan-Canadian strategy to meet needs from coast to coast
Moreover, in order to meet growing housing needs in the various parts of our country and to adapt the federal government's interventions to their realities, it is important to create a pan-Canadian housing strategy in partnership with the provinces, territories and civil society groups. This is the intent of Bill C‑265, An Act to ensure secure, adequate, accessible and affordable housing for Canadians.
Indigenous communities are among the most affected by the housing crisis. During her tour on the housing situation in Canada (2012–2015), Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet visited several northern Inuit and Cree communities in Nunavik, where she witnessed the poor condition of housing, overcrowding, major renovation needs, and lack of suitability for traditional lifestyles and climate conditions. The New Democratic Party is asking the government to invest massively in housing construction and renovation in Indigenous communities.
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