3. Affordable Housing

Challenges: Threats and Losses

  • Cancelled: Rent control in new buildings
  • Leads to Lanark County removing mobile mental health crisis response teams 
  • proposed legislation to fine people for sharing or recording landlord and tenant board hearings even though there is an open court principle to make sure hearings our fair
  • Eebametoong First Nation continues to call for urgent action on the housing crisis – they also have one of Ontario’s longest boil water advisories

What do we Need Instead 

We need strong rent controls and actions that contribute to more affordable housing.

Act like it’s an emergency! Amping up the approach….

The housing crisis is an emergency. Part of building and safeguarding a livable world includes safe shelter. Key words are accessible, affordable and energy efficient.

Spotlight on Climate Justice! 

Created by Jan Berger of Paperhand Puppet Intervention

A few points here:

  • Renter protections including strict rent control as buildings are retrofitted by landlords.
  • Energy efficiency and retrofits that mean extreme heat, cold and weather do not make apartments and other housing units dangerous places to live.
  • Working with Indigenous communities and providing the necessary support to address infrastructure gaps, remove boil water advisories and mitigate the ongoing housing crisis.
  • Development that includes affordable housing and well-funded coop and social housing.

Example of a win!

What: to protect tenantsbuild affordable housingstop evictionsfreeze childcare fees and provide affordable internet access.

Who: Acorn Canada

How: Hundreds of letters, emails and calls from members to city councillors and the mayor.

Win: Toronto city council adds $500,000 in 2022 budget on February 17th to hire bylaw officers to help counter landlords who violate property standards. Also preparing a report about increasing staff and expanding the RentSafe program.

What Else Can We Do?

Join a Group: Do you have a group like the York South Weston Tenant Union Association that you could join or support in your area?

Take Action: Get involved with Acorn as they work to ensure that low and moderate income communities’ demands are centred in the provincial and municipal elections.

Learn More: Environmental Defence Housing Affordability Backgrounder

Ontario’s Affordable Housing Task Force Report does not Address the Real Problems

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