Empowering tenants to ensure housing security in Oakwood Vaughan, Eglinton west
This project is the second phase of the previous Eglinton Oakwood Tenant Solidarity Program. In this phase, the Oakwood Vaughan Community Organization proposes a new community development approach centering tenants at risk of displacement in the planning process to counter the increased housing insecurity for lower income households, many of which are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. Tenant solidarity through community leadership aims to grow community capacity for tenants to lead and be supported by other residents and local organizations. Its flagship activity is establishing a Tenant Union to protect tenants and increase social inclusion and community engagement. It also seeks to establish a residential Community Land Trust to support innovative and sustainable business practices. It finally aims to establish pathways for homeowners and other supporting organizations to contribute funds and capital to build more affordable housing. The impact desired of the project is to strengthen solidarity between tenants and homeowners, to protect existing affordable housing and to create new units. The project sustainability counts on the fact that creating real human connections between residents and institutions committed to working in solidarity with tenants at risk of displacement will generate long-term solutions. Furthermore, tenants will be supported to become effective leaders and advocates for adequate housing strategies. This inclusive approach where community leadership is valued and developed should result in decreased housing insecurity for lower income households.