Dec. 1, 2010 - ACORN Canada was disappointed with the release Monday of Premier McGuinty’s long term affordable housing strategy. After years of advocating for a provincial housing plan that will address the affordable housing crisis in substantial way, ACORN members, tenants, and low-income residents across Ontario expected much from the Province.
As the Toronto Star pointed out in their editorial response to the release of the housing plan, it "...[the housing plan] is little more than a series of regulatory changes” in the place of a comprehensive plan to address housing affordability.
Today, ACORN Canada along with the Wellesley Institute are releasing our own report on a key policy that was left out of the housing plan: Inclusionary Housing.
Inclusionary housing policies are powerful tools that Ontario municipalities can use to build new affordable housing. They work by changing zoning practices to mandate affordable units in all new residential development, thus creating a permanent stock of affordable housing located in every new housing development, and thereby spread across the community.
ACORN member and working mom Toby Jason who lives in a high-rise market rental building at Weston and Lawrence had this to say:
“I’ve had a full time job since I was 18 but have always had to live paycheck to paycheck so I’ve never been able to get ahead. When you own something, people look at you like you’re worth something. I’ve lived here for over 30 years already and it breaks my heart that I still won’t have anything to leave my son.
ACORN Canada is urging the province to introduce Inclusionary Zoning enabling legislation in the coming legislative session so our cities can get to the serious work of addressing the lack of affordable housing across Ontario.
Special thanks to the Wellesley Institute for partnering with us on the report and Richard Drdla Associates for their hard work.