Comments on Government of Canada Housing Announcement

City of Toronto Housing Advocate Ana Bailao Comments on Government of Canada Housing Announcement

As Chair of the City of Toronto Planning and Housing Committee, and the City's Housing Advocate, I welcome today's announcement by the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and Adam Vaughan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.

I have always maintained that any effective and meaningful solution to our short and long-term housing challenges, both within the City of Toronto and across the country, require all levels of government and all stakeholders to work collaboratively if we are to be successful.

Last week, I joined with Mayor John Tory in calling for significant support from the federal and provincial governments to address housing challenges that have become even more pressing during this public health crisis.  In working with stakeholders from across the housing spectrum over the past few months, it is clear that this unprecedented public health emergency requires significant and rapid action to support the housing needs of residents of this City and beyond.

Today, as part of the National Housing Strategy, the federal government has announced a $1 billion initiative that will include modular housing, the acquisition of land, and the conversion of existing buildings to affordable housing. The federal announcement notes that we can expect to see the creation of up to 3,000 new affordable housing units across the country which will also help to support the economic recovery.

The federal government will also provide $236.7 million under the Reaching Home Program to extend and expand the emergency response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will add to the $157.5 million already announced in April of this year. This additional funding investment will help communities to continue emergency measures that have been effective in reducing the risk of Covid outbreaks among people experiencing homelessness and also support the delivery of affordable housing solutions

I welcome today's commitment from the federal government and call upon our provincial government to provide the ongoing support that will enable supportive housing initiatives to continue in a sustainable manner now and in the years to come.

These past few months have only served to demonstrate that a safe, affordable and stable home is essential for all people in our City and across our country, and I applaud the federal government's announcement today and reiterate the reality that to effectively address homelessness and housing challenges, we must all continue work together.

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published this page in Press Releases 2020-09-21 15:21:22 -0400

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