I received a question on Social Housing today:
Hi Bob, I am just wondering what your views are on the social housing crisis for newcomers to Canada in the Kitchener area? Hope you can answer before voting day.
Hi! There is a social housing crisis not just for newcomers to Canada, but for anyone of low income, affected by disability, or in a social situation that removes them from access to housing.
The situation for refugees has responsibility divided among all three levels of government — the Ministry for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship at the federal level, the Ontario Ministry of Housing and Ministry of Municipal Affairs, and finally the municipalities who are tasked with setting the by-laws and issuing the building permits for housing.The Green Party has been advocating for a comprehensive Housing Strategy at both the federal and provicial levels. The Green Party of Ontario’s platform on housing is to ensure that 20% of all new development is affordable housing. But rather than burdening municipalities with the costs, funding for shelters, social, co-op and supportive housing will come from the developers, and an increase in the housing speculation tax. In addition, we would relax municipal by-laws (through the Ontario Municipal Act) to permit “tiny homes”, laneway homes, and basement apartments, which will increase the supply of housing almost immediately.
Please have a look at the Green Party of Ontario’s platform, and let me know if you have any other questions!