It's been an exciting 2 months, with actions across the country for affordable housing. From a front-page article in the Toronto Star, to big strides moving the Burnaby Anti-Demoviction campaign forward, new organizing drives in Surrey and Montreal, and actions on slumlords in Hamilton, Halifax and Ottawa!
Provincially, we have a new government in Ontario who is quickly taking resources away from low and moderate income communities. Within the first 6 weeks, they have cut $700 - $900 million for social and private housing retrofits, money that was coming from Cap and Trade revenues. And just yesterday, people on OW and ODSP had their promised 3% rate increase slashed in half. The BC government has improved some tenant protections and lowered payday lending interest rates but there is still much more to do to stop the affordability crisis in Metro Vancouver, and desperately needed social assistance and disability rate increases.
Federally, we had a partial victory when Ottawa ACORN leaders met with the Minister of Innovation, who finally declared that high-speed internet is a right and announced a new affordable internet program providing $10/month for low-income parents, starting in the fall. Clearly, we have work to do to expand the program to all people who can't afford high-speed internet. We also met with some top policy officials in the department of finance to discuss our fair banking campaign. We need to keep fighting if we want lower bank fees and fair credit!
See some highlights below.