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Community discussion underscores need to protect housing investments in London

Mayor Joe Fontana and 110 community partners today held a roundtable discussion that provided municipal leaders and local stakeholders with an opportunity to speak out about the impact Canada’s housing crunch is having on the City.


The goal of the morning session was to sign off on a joint letter to political policy makers and issue a “Call to Action” to positively affect the federal and provincial government budgets regarding housing as well as the pending elections in 2014 and 2015.


The roundtable was part of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ (FCM) campaign entitled “Fixing Canada’s Housing Crunch”, which urges the federal government and all political parties to work with provincial, territorial and municipal leaders, as well as the private sector, to develop a concrete and long-term plan that addresses the high cost of housing in Canada and improves predictability of future federal housing investments.


“Everyone needs and deserves a home they can afford,” said Mayor Fontana. “Safe, adequate shelter is critical for every segment of the population, from those just entering the housing market to seniors and lower income residents.  Our community and our country need a strong housing strategy.  We need leadership and commitment from the federal and provincial governments.  All levels of government must work together to make home a reality for everyone.”


Canada’s housing crunch is one of the most urgent financial issue facing Canadians today. One in four Canadians is paying more than they can afford for housing and mortgage debt held by Canadians now stands at more than $1.1 trillion. At the same time, $1.7 billion in annual federal housing investments are set to expire with the greatest drop in funding, up to $500 million a year, ending between 2014 and 2019. This will put 200,000 people at risk of losing their homes and lead to inadequate rental availability, as 80% of federal affordable housing investments expire. The loss of these vital investments could have serious consequences for London.