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New census data confirms need for affordable housing solutions (25/10/2017)

Federation of Canadian Municipalities President Jenny Gerbasi issued this statement following today's Statistics Canada data release.

“Today’s 2016 Census data reveals much about Canada’s housing affordability crisis and how the federal government’s upcoming National Housing Strategy needs to tackle it. With 3.3 million households spending at least 30 per cent of their income on shelter—and 17.8 per cent of renters paying more than half their income—the time to transform affordable housing in Canada is now.

“Safe, affordable housing is the bedrock of the liveable, competitive cities and communities we aspire to build. This new data is another wake-up call that housing is becoming less affordable and that Indigenous social housing providers disproportionately need access to repair grants. The upcoming National Housing Strategy is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to tackle the housing affordability crisis—if the federal government gets it right.

“FCM and our Big City Mayors’ Caucus have laid out comprehensive recommendations to get that strategy right. It means prioritizing backlogged social housing repairs and replacing expiring rent subsidies. It means leveraging local expertise and building new affordable housing that’s sustainable and that strengthens our neighbourhoods and communities. It means recognizing that northern and Indigenous communities will require distinct solutions that recognize local realities and local decision-making.

“The federal government has come a long way by committing to launch a National Housing Strategy, funding it through significant investment in Budget 2017. Getting this strategy right is a one-time opportunity to launch a transformation of Canada’s housing system. The Federation of Canadian Municipalities is bringing our front line expertise to the table to make sure that happens.”

Jenny Gerbasi is the President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and Deputy Mayor for the City of Winnipeg. FCM is the national voice of local government, with 2,000 members representing 91 per cent of Canada’s population.

For more information, please contact:
FCM Media Relations, (613) 907-6395,

Page Updated: 26/10/2017