Canada News Wire
Canadians speak up on issues of homelessness and poverty
Today, (February 17), the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development wrapped up a tour of western Canada after meeting with stakeholders in Vancouver and Edmonton.
The visits were an important opportunity to speak with community leaders, not-for-profit organizations and stakeholders about tackling issues such as poverty, homelessness, and affordable housing.
In Vancouver, the Minister began his tour by having breakfast with Metro Vancouver mayors and councillors.
This was an opportunity for him to acknowledge and congratulate them for their efforts and initiatives to reduce poverty. The roundtable session was the first of the in-person consultations held in support of the Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy, which launched on February 13 in Ottawa, Ontario.
Minister Duclos then proceeded with a site visit to the Spirit of the Children Society, where he took part in discussions about the support needed for Aboriginal youth transitioning out of the child welfare program, and the need for permanent housing.
The Minister also participated in the official opening of a three-story building at 220 Terminal Avenue, hosted by the Vancouver Affordable Housing Agency.
The new building is the first project in Canada to be approved by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation under the Affordable Rental Innovation Fund, and features 40 single occupancy suites for people at risk of homelessness, students and seniors. The project also includes moveable modular units, which are set up on undeveloped, city-owned land to provide temporary housing when needed.
In Edmonton, Minister Duclos hosted a roundtable session with key stakeholders, focusing on unique issues related to poverty faced by communities, including the progress to rebuild Fort McMurray following the aftermath of last year’s wildfires.
“It is a privilege to be able to meet with local leaders and partners who know better than anyone else the reality of those facing poverty and homelessness. Together with all Canadians, we will find solutions to ensure that every Canadian has the chance to build a good life for themselves and their families.”
– The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.
. For more information visit Canada.ca/reduce-poverty or join the conversation to #ReducePoverty in Canada.
. Canada’s low-income rate has been around 9 percent for the past decade. This means that every day, 3 million Canadians are living in poverty.
. Sixty-three percent of single, low-income seniors are women.
. About 746,000 Canadians live in a household where the main income earner is working poor.
. In 2014, more than half a million children in Canada were living in low-income households.
. Since the launch of the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, nearly 35,000 Canadians who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless have benefitted from education and training opportunities; over 34,000 have received help to find work; more than 6,000 new shelter beds have been created; and the program has helped place over 82,000 people in more stable housing.
. The Affordable Rental Innovation Fund is expected to help create up to 4,000 new affordable rental units over five years and reduce reliance on long-term government subsidies.