Beginning on National Housing Day, Friday, November 22nd thousands of people across Canada will raise their voices in support of Housing as a Human Right!
We all have a part to play in ending homelessness – we are working in our communities everyday to support human rights and the creation of social housing but more action is needed by the federal government as well as provincial, territorial and municipal governments. Every year, 200,000 people are absolutely homeless in Canada, and millions more are inadequately housed. Aboriginal people, women, people with disabilities, racialized community members, seniors, youth, newcomers and others face high rates of homelessness and housing inadequacy.
To end this crisis, on November 22nd we demand that immediate action be taken:
1. In the next budget, the federal government must protect existing social housing. 600,000 people and their families could be forced to move to inadequate housing or be made homeless by rent increases they cannot afford if Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation fails to restore the annual operating grants investment of $1.7 billion annually in social housing subsidies.
2. In the next budget, federal funding for social housing construction and programs and services for the homeless must be increased and made permanent. Funding for flexible local, regional and provincial approaches must be provided every year. This includes the Investment in Affordable Housing which funds construction of new housing units and the Homelessness Partnering Strategy which provides funding for programs & services for people who are homeless.
3. The federal government must coordinate a pan-Canadian housing strategy based on human rights. Housing is a human right. It’s time that the federal government convene a meeting together with all levels of government, in consultation with civil society and Aboriginal groups, to establish a Canadian housing strategy that respects provincial jurisdiction, which is designed to respect, promote and fulfill the right to safe, adequate and affordable housing.
This event is organized by the Right to Housing Coalition Ontario as part of the Pan-Canadian week of action for housing.