Policy and Political Action

Policy & Political Action

Invest in affordable housing to save lives

Ontarians without safe and affordable housing face a daily assault on their human dignity, and too often die prematurely. Toronto's Board of Health was recently shocked to learn that at least 70 people who were homeless died over the first nine months of 2017. That's about two people every week, and most never reached the age of 50.

The overcrowded and inadequate shelter system in Toronto is in crisis. It is estimated that 1,000 new shelter beds are needed just to reach a 90 per cent occupancy rate. And this is not just a Toronto problem. With about 12,000 Ontarians experiencing homelessness across the province each night, demand for shelter space has been increasing. At the same time, 30 shelter beds have been lost since 2011 and an influx of new refugees have found themselves in the shelter system. In 2015, there were more than 171,360 households across Ontario waiting for rent-geared-to-income housing.

To speak out for housing as part of National Housing Week (Nov. 19-25), please sign RNAO's action alert asking Premier Kathleen Wynne and Minister of Housing Peter Milczyn to invest one per cent of Ontario's annual budget ($1.4 billion in 2017) every year to address the affordable housing crisis. Such an investment is essential to create new affordable housing stock, address the backlog of repairs to existing affordable housing units and to help address homelessness.

Copies will be sent to:

  • Hon. Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario
  • Hon. Peter Milczyn, Minister of Housing and Minister Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy
  • Patrick Brown, Leader of the Official Opposition
  • Andrea Horwath, Leader of the New Democratic Party of Ontario
  • Ernie Hardeman, PC Critic for Municipal Affairs and Housing
  • Percy Hatfiled, NDP Critic Housing
  • Julia Munro, PC Critic for Poverty Reduction Strategy
  • Paul Miller, NDP Critic, Poverty Reduction
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