Advocacy for investment in community and social housing

The summer wish list for most Quebecers looks the same year after year: picking your next vacation spot, reaching for your beach bag, decorating your backyard or balcony, enjoying a good barbecue meal, all while bathing in sunscreen.

Posted at 11:00.

André Castonge and Ann Demers
Accordingly, CEO of the Quebec Network of Housing NGOs (RQOH) and CEO of the Regroupement des office d’habitation du Québec (ROHQ)*

But for too many low-income Quebec households, including more and more families, their only desire is to be able to live in decent housing. One month after 1uh In July, the signatories of this text would like to remind decision makers of the purpose of community and social housing: to provide housing in a healthy and safe environment for those who need it.

50 years of housing experience

Over 50 years, developers and managers of communal and social housing have gained incomparable experience and solid knowledge in their field. More than ever, their daily actions contribute to the fight against social and economic inequality. Even today, they support 190,000 low- and modest-income families established in all regions of Quebec.

Leaders, administrators and employees of cooperatives, housing authorities and non-profit organizations have been dedicated for at least half a century to providing decent housing in healthy and safe living conditions for an ever-growing number of citizens and citizens.

Like education, health or social services professionals working with vulnerable clients, these social and community housing professionals support thousands of Quebec families every year.

To date, buildings owned and operated by these organizations are valued at more than $20 billion. These properties were financed by public funds at all levels of government.

It goes without saying that today’s governments have a responsibility to ensure the sustainability of these investments by continuing the work begun by their predecessors and by remaining active partners in community and social housing reconstruction and construction projects.

Who today would think of abandoning a house built by their own hands, without doing anything to ensure its sustainability? Who today would think of turning down the support offered to loved ones in need so that they avoid dangerous situations or even become homeless?

That’s what public and social housing is for!

The public choice made 50 years ago to invest in public and social housing by creating the funding needed to support low-income or vulnerable tenants now supports these around 190,000 households.

This collective decision goes a long way towards preventing and even reducing homelessness, providing parents with housing that allows their children to continue in school, and maintaining a stable home for the elderly.

Today, we all have a stake in preserving these social gains by protecting our collective housing stock, adequately funding the construction of new public and social housing, and simplifying the procedures and administrative procedures that make these projects difficult to implement.

The issue of adequate funding for community and social housing is directly related to the fate of thousands of families in Quebec. Chronic underfunding not only contributes to increasing homelessness and the deterioration of the housing security of a large number of young families and independent older people, but, of course, undermines all efforts made to combat poverty.

In addition, community support for these people, whose funding will benefit from the increase, reduces the burden on our health and social services. It also makes it easier to support immigrant families in their new living environment.

Collective Commitment

Organizations in the community and social housing sector today reiterate their commitment to using their experience and know-how to benefit low- or modest-income Quebec citizens.

What will be the commitment of political parties to housing issues in Quebec? To get acquainted with them, the main leaders of the political parties participating in the next elections were invited to the pre-election debates on September 13 next year within the framework of 8e Colloquium RQOH.

* Here are four other signatories: Yves Dube, President of the Federation of Low Income Tenants in Quebec (FLHLMQ); Ambroise Henri, President of the Association of Quebec Technical Resource Groups (AGRTQ); Véronique Laflamme, representative of the Popular Action Front for Urban Improvement (FRAPRU); Sandra Tergen, Executive Director of the Confederation of Housing Cooperatives of Quebec (CQCH)