Liberals unveil affordable housing strategy

The government announced Wednesday a 10-year, $40 billion National Housing Strategy aimed at improving housing affordability for Canadians.

“Everyone deserves a safe and affordable place to call home. Canada’s first ever National Housing Strategy is a once-in-a-generation vision to reduce homelessness, support community housing and shelter spaces, and address challenges of housing affordability,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a statement. “We took a major step forward on housing today, and we will continue to deliver initiatives that strengthen the middle class and lift more Canadians out of poverty.”

The National Housing Strategy is aimed at helping Canada’s most vulnerable citizens meet their housing needs.

The national plan, which is the first of its kind, aims to reduce “chronic homelessness” by 50%.

It also aims to remove 530,000 households from housing need; quadruple the number of federal housing units built under federal programs; repair three times as many existing units under the same programs; and protect an additional 385,000 households from losing an affordable place to live.

As part of the $40 billion investment, the federal government will work with provinces and territories to develop a $4 billion Canada Housing Benefit, to be launched in 2020, which will address local housing needs.

The investment in the National Housing Strategy also includes; $15.9 billion for a new National Housing Co-Investment Fund, $8.6 billion for a new Canada Community Housing Initiative, $2.2 billion to reduce homelessness, $300 million to address housing needs in the north, and $241 million for research and data.

“Our Government is establishing a federal leadership role in housing,” Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for CMHC, said. “The National Housing Strategy will create a new generation of housing in Canada. It will promote diverse communities and will build housing that is sustainable, accessible, mixed-income and mixed-use that will be located near transit, work and public services.”

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