Women and Predatory Lending

In Canada, women earn eighty-seven cents for every dollar earned by men. Women are less likely to be employed than men and are overrepresented in precarious jobs. Twenty-six per cent of female-led lone parent families live in poverty, compared to twelve per cent of those led by men. Given these statistics, it is somewhat unsurprising that payday loan use tends to occur more often in female-headed households.

ACORN Canada’s Protect Your Privacy-Online! Educational Program

This evaluation reports on the outcomes of ACORN Canada’s Protect Your Privacy-Online! project, funded by the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. This project consists of three workshops, offered in four Canadian cities and is designed to educate lower income Canadians about the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA). PIPEDA is Canada’s Federal legislation that establishes rules for how private-sector organizations must protect the online privacy of Canadians.

Prêts abusifs: Un sondage sur les utilisateurs de services financiers alternatifs à taux d'intérêt élevé

Ce document analyse les résultats d'un sondage qu’ACORN Canada a mené à l’aide sur un échantillon de ses membres dans le but de comprendre pourquoi ils se tournent vers des services financiers alternatifs tels que les prêts sur salaire à taux d'intérêt élevé.

Le sondage révèle que la majorité des 268 répondants utilisent des services financiers à taux d'intérêt élevé, tels que les prêts sur salaire, qu’en dernier recours parce que les banques traditionnelles leur refusent les services de crédit adéquats.

Predatory Lending: A Survey of High Interest Alternative Financial Service Users

This paper analyzes findings from a survey by ACORN Canada of a sampling of its membership to understand why they turn to alternative financial services such as high interest payday loans. The survey finds that the majority of the 268 respondents turn to high interest financial services such as payday loans as a last resort because they are denied adequate credit services from traditional banks.

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Ottawa ACORN’s Response to Maclaren Group’s Policy Options Report on Housing Conditions

Ottawa ACORN members are in the final sprint for their campaign for landlord licensing. After convincing city council to include landlord licensing as part of the City's "regulating rental accommodations" review, members have organized Tenant Speak Outs, days of action at City Hall, door knocked in bad apartment buildings, released reports, engaged the media and have met with the City's consultants three times. The consultants from Maclaren Group have released their report on policy options for housing conditions and are asking for feedback before submitting their recommendations to City Hall. 
 
Read Ottawa ACORN's response here: 

Housing Horror Stories: The Tenants' Case for Landlord Licensing in Ottawa

This collection of tenant testimonials shows that the City of Ottawa needs to do more to improve housing conditions.
 
Tenants are living in substandard conditions without the necessary support to allow them to stand up to landlords and have their needs met. The Property Standards By-law has more procedural steps and delays than most by-laws in addition to any notice of violation being unenforceable.
 
The City's review on regulating rental accommodations is a good first step in addressing tenants' very real concerns regarding the state of their housing. It is Ottawa ACORN members' hope that this sample of housing horror stories will demonstrate to our city that substandard housing conditions is a systematic issue that warrants urgent attention. We need landlord licensing NOW!

Ottawa ACORN: The Fight for the Right to Housing and a No Displacement CBA in Herongate

Community benefits agreements (CBAs) are legally enforceable contracts signed by community groups and a private developer or government agency. CBAs can result  in a range of benefits for community members, such as jobs and training; community  amenities,  support  for local  business,  affordable  housing and other provisions. 
 
As a community organization of low and moderate income families and individuals fighting for social and economic justice, ACORN is invested in ensuring community benefits agreements meet the needs of the communities we work with. 

ACORN Canada’s submission to the Increasing Housing Supply in Ontario Consultation

As an organization of low and moderate income people, the issue of housing affordability is a priority concern for our members. Specifically, our members are concerned about the desperate need for deeply affordable rental housing that is affordable in the long term. Almost half of Ontario renters live in unaffordable housing. Yet since 1990, less than 9 per cent of new developments in the province have been rental housing. Urgent action is required to address this housing crisis, we call upon the provincial government to take leadership to create real affordable housing options.

Hamilton Tenants Demand A Better City from City Hall

Hamilton is in an affordable and livable housing crisis. This is a trend seen across most major Canadian cities, that will worsen with no government action. The City of Hamilton has a responsibility to protect the most vulnerable. If the city continues on its current path of protecting developers and landlords over working class communities, more and more tenants will lose affordable housing or be forced to remain in unsafe and unhealthy conditions.

A State of Disrepair: Hamilton ACORN Tenant Survey

In the early days of Hamilton ACORN, our low-to-moderate income membership identified substandard living conditions as the number one issue they want addressed. Conditions in buildings were unhealthy and deteriorating, while at the
same time their rents would rise.
 
Over the course of the following year Hamilton ACORN started a petition drive to highlight the issue, held a successful Hamilton Tenant Rally in the summer of 2017, and has since held multiple actions against landlords.
 
Our leaders have pushed and secured meetings with the heads of Hamilton’s largest landlords. While we were able to walk away from these meetings with some tenant victories, it became clear to our members that a larger authority must be helping tenants to hold landlords accountable.
 

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Broadbent Institute: Networked Change in Canada

This groundbreaking report maps out the strategies and practices that lie behind today’s most successful advocacy campaigns both in Canada and abroad. In the process, it demonstrates how and why they succeed in creating lasting change on the issues they address while so many others fail. Based on a study by authors Jason Mogus and Tom Liacas that looked at mostly U.S.-based case studies, this report now presents similar innovations in Canada by reviewing in depth case studies of eight breakthrough Canadian campaigns. The report’s goal is to transmit a model that can be learned and replicated by other campaigners for how to blend grassroots participation and organizing with disciplined central planning to win.

An Analysis on the Locations of Polling Stations in Municipal Elections in Ottawa

Through correspondence with the City of Ottawa, it was suggested to ACORN--by the individual responsible for administering polling station locations--that the city uses voter turnout rates as the primary criterion for where to locate polling stations. This is extremely problematic, for it goes against democratic principles for voting to be made more convenient to those who more regularly exercise that democratic right; instead, the more democratic criterion for the location of polling stations would, of course, be based on population density.

The Wellesley Institute: Rising Inequality, Declining Health

In a 2012 report, the Metcalf Foundation developed a new definition of working poverty. This definition is based on income, rather than hours worked, and excludes students and those who do not live independently. Applying that definition, the authors then used data from the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID) and the Census to estimate how many people in Toronto were living in working poverty, where they were living and working, and to describe their family lives, education and age.

This brief report by the Wellesley Institute builds on the Metcalf analysis to consider the impact of working poverty on self-reported health. How do people who are working and poor (working poor) describe their health? How does their health compare with others who are poor but are not in the labour force (non-working poor)? How does their health compare with those who are able to work and support themselves and their families (working non-poor)? Finally, how have these three groups’ perceptions of their health changed over time?

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