The financialization of housing, according to the United Nations’ Human Rights Commission, “occurs when housing is treated as a commodity—a vehicle for wealth and investment—rather than a social good.” Admittedly, the subject sounds as dry as month-old toast, but it is critical to understanding why, in a society as wealthy as ours, so many people cannot afford an appropriate place to call home.
Phase 2 of the Federal Community Housing Initiative expands eligibility and commits $118.2 million towards rental assistance for low-income households and for community-housing providers.
The appointment of Ahmed Hussen as Minister of Housing, Diversity and Inclusion gives us hope in the federal government’s aspiration to make a difference. But what exactly does that mean? Stakeholders involved in the community-housing sector, including the Centre’s executive director, Stéphan Corriveau, and independent consultant Steve Pomeroy reflect on the implications of the change.
The federal government announced $1.5 billion for the second round of the rapid housing initiative on June 30. This phase of the program, which addresses some of the concerns raised in the first round, was well received by community-housing stakeholders, although they want the initiative to be become a permanent program.
A $1-billion federal grant program for the rapid construction of 3,000 units of affordable housing attracted interest from so many groups that hundreds of viable projects won’t make the cut. The possibility of a renewed RHI program has led housing groups to propose improvements to the hugely popular initiative in anticipation of a second wave of construction to meet the basic needs of Canadians.