Campaign urges province, feds to step up social housing funding

By , City Hall Bureau Chief


TORONTO - Councillor Ana Bailao is taking her fight for housing funding to the streets.

Bailao unveiled a new ad campaign Thursday asking the feds and province to close the housing funding gap.

“We’re putting the message in our bus shelters all across the city,” she said.

The “Close the Housing Gap” campaign posters are to start going up Monday in 135 bus shelters across Toronto and at a shelter near Parliament Hill in Ottawa.

“Toronto needs sustained federal/provincial funding for social housing,” the poster reads.

Bailao — the campaign co-chair — said the intention is to send a “strong message” to the province and the federal government that “we want them to step up, not step away from funding in social housing.

“This is not a pissing match between governments,” Bailao said. “This is the largest city of the country with a big issue that affects thousands of our residents, we have waiting lists (of) over 86,000 households.

“We need the province and the federal government to come to the table to help us address this situation,” she added.

The campaign asks both Ottawa and Queen’s Park to keep funds for social housing at existing levels and make new, long-term funding investments for capital repairs.

TCHC CEO Gene Jones said he’ll be hanging a copy of the campaign poster on the front of the corporation’s Rosedale headquarters.

“At Toronto Community Housing too many of our buildings are falling apart,” Jones said. “We simply do not have the dollars we need to maintain them in a state of good repair.”

He said they are trying to stretch dollars as “far as they need.”

“The harsh reality is that we are not able to solve this problem unless Queen’s Park and Ottawa come to the table,” he said. “We cannot do this alone, we need the federal and provincial governments to do their fair share.

“It is the right thing to do for the hundreds of thousands of people who live in social housing.”


Original story available HERE

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