Addressing Toronto's Affordable Housing Challenge

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As Chair of the Affordable Housing Commit­tee, I have led numerous initiatives to protect, promote and expand affordable housing in Toronto. Through work on this Committee I have succeeded in preventing the mass sell-off of the single-family homes, raised millions for the repair backlog and championed the critical need of additional funding support from other levels of government.

In 2011, City Council considered the mass sell-off of an important part of Toronto's social housing portfolio – the single family homes. I requested time to find a solution and was appointed by Council to Chair the Special Working Group to investigate innovate solutions to the repair backlog with the target of raising $120 million over a two year pe­riod. Using no new money from the City, we exceeded this target within 6 months of the report’s release.

While I will keep working to find creative solutions, our City cannot address this situation alone. That is why I am proud to co-chair the Close the Housing Gap campaign, a two year initiative to promote additional financial support for social housing from the Provincial and Fed­eral government. This initiative recognizes that the Provincial and Federal governments have a critical role in adequately funding Toronto’s af­fordable housing solutions – now is the time for them to step up to this challenge, not back.

Based on this work, I was also recently ap­pointment as a board member to the Toronto Community Housing Corporation and the Hous­ing Services Corporation. I will continue to be a strong advocate for housing affordability in Toronto as I work to build more engaged, more prosperous and more sustainable neighbor­hoods in our city.

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