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Results: 1 - 30 of 22195
View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:32
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I'm good to go.
As a very quick reassurance, Mr. Taylor, the minister and the head of CMHC have both rejected the idea and communicated that to your organization. The line of questioning we just heard, while interesting, is not applicable to any policy decision the government is going to make.
Mr. Taylor, we've communicated that we're not pursuing that idea under any circumstance. That's been communicated to you.
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:33
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Thanks very much.
Ms. McGee, I have a couple of questions on Reaching Home.
We have been asked by some of the opposition parties to end Reaching Home and to send the dollars straight to provincial capitals and not to front-line services, particularly in B.C., by the member for Vancouver East, Ms. Kwan. What would the impact of that be on some of the prairie provinces—Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta—where support for homeless services, in particular harm reduction, has been very slow to meet the front-line needs of a COVID response?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:35
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In terms of the $19-billion restart fund that we just delivered to the provinces and territories, how much of that have you received so far?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:35
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That's out of the restart program that we just recently shipped to.... It's federal money that's being distributed by the province to your organization.
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:36
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That's the risk of funding the provinces and asking them to do federal work. Sometimes the provinces have different priorities, and therefore the money wouldn't get to the front lines. And it hasn't.
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:36
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In terms of the acquisition of assets to support distancing people, quarantining people and providing health services, how many sites has your organization helped secure during COVID to provide more stable housing for individuals who are in precarious situations?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:37
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I have one last quick question. In terms of the CERB or basic income delivered by the federal government, and in terms of housing supports for individuals, do the supports work better when the assets are owned? That would drive down the cost of delivering those programs. Would you recommend that we support the acquisition of sites as we build out supportive housing networks across the country to deal with both COVID and homelessness going forward?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 15:38
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To be clear here, basic income works, but it works better when there's affordable housing attached to it. In other words, if there's a system to tie it to, then basic income goes further, works harder and provides more support for people.
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
I'm going to move over to Ms. McGee.
Ms. McGee, we know that in 2016 and 2018, point-in-time counts were done, and looking at those gives us an idea of what homelessness looks like. In 2020, of course, it's been postponed.
What kind of impact will that have on data collection, and what will we be able to do so that we have that coordinated response that you speak of?
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Okay. That's great to know.
When you're looking at first-time homelessness, I know that for many people who are unfortunately finding themselves without a home, it is for the first time and it is due to the pandemic. What does that look like, and are there any factors we should be looking at? Are there financial needs because of the pandemic, or is it something to do with a variety of addictions and other things that are occurring? What would you say is one of the biggest causes during this pandemic for increased first-time homelessness for people?
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Okay. I'm going to switch over very quickly to Paul Taylor.
Right now, what are you seeing on the trends when it comes to the first-time homebuyers getting into the market during this pandemic?
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View Kate Young Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Kate Young Profile
2020-08-17 15:59
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Thank you very much, Chair, and I apologize for that. I actually lost connection for a good 10 minutes, so I apologize if I'm repeating anything that's already been asked.
Ms. McGee, you mentioned that you have established new partnerships because of COVID-19. You mentioned hotels, and here in London our city has been using a hotel. I wonder about the sustainability of that model. As you said, something is going to have to give. What will happen to those 600 people in Edmonton who are being housed in hotels right now?
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View Kate Young Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Kate Young Profile
2020-08-17 16:01
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Thank you.
Indigenous homelessness has been an issue that we've grappled with in London, and I was pleased to support a motion by MP Gazan to actually study indigenous homelessness. It's been put on hold because of COVID, but of course the problem is that much worse. I just wonder if you could comment on how COVID has changed the dynamics, if at all, for indigenous homelessness.
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View Kate Young Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Kate Young Profile
2020-08-17 16:03
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I also want to pick up on something that MP Vaughan was talking about, which was money flowing from the province and maybe some of the concerns there. Certainly in some provinces, they're not getting the funds necessary within the right time frame.
Is building new housing the answer to this? Is that really the bottom line of what we need to do?
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View Kate Young Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Kate Young Profile
2020-08-17 16:04
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Thank you very much.
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View Irek Kusmierczyk Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
I just want to say what an excellent conversation we're having here this afternoon and to thank my colleagues for the excellent questions and the panellists for the excellent responses.
My question is directed to Ms. McGee and Madame Corriveau. I'm not sure if Ms. McGee is available.
Vancouver recently did its annual homeless count and for the first time they used race-based data, which revealed and confirmed that people who identified as black and as indigenous were disproportionately represented among the homeless population. Statistics Canada recently released its labour force survey, again using disaggregated race-based data for the first time, and it revealed that COVID-19 is hitting hard Canadians who identify, for example, as south Asian, Arabic, black and indigenous.
How important is the gathering of disaggregated race-based data when it comes to housing and homelessness, and why is that important?
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View Irek Kusmierczyk Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you very much.
I would ask Madame Corriveau for her opinion on this too.
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View Irek Kusmierczyk Profile
Lib. (ON)
Thank you very much, Chair.
Thank you very much for your answers. That gives us a lot of food for thought and is much appreciated.
We know that through the Reaching Home initiative there is an indigenous homelessness funding stream. I just want to ask both of you again to comment on the following: Compared with the general population, do indigenous people experience homelessness and face additional or different vulnerabilities when it comes to COVID-19?
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you very much.
I'm going to turn to Mr. Taylor, but first of all, I would really like to thank Ms. Corriveau and Ms. McGee for talking about the continuum as we're looking at it. When I look at housing, I look at the whole thing and the impact in terms of that simple physics measure that whenever there is one action, you're going to get the opposite reaction as well. I look at that, and when we're talking about housing and homelessness, we also have to look at the other end.
However, my major concern right now is in the middle of this continuum. From some statistics I was looking at from the CREA, the Canadian Real Estate Association, one of the greatest concerns I have right now is about supply. Right now, housing inventory is at a 16-year low, and in my community it's at about 1.1 months of inventory, when we should be having averages of between five and eight months of inventory. This is just way out. The average cost of a house in Canada right now is $571,500. We know that it's gone up. Of course, there were going to be people wanting to get into the market, so we were expecting a bit of a boom, with sales going up by 26% in the month of July. I'm really concerned about the impact and I'm just going to tell you a little story about my own community.
Though I know that people who live in Toronto love having Mr. Vaughan there, they like to move to my community where they get a more affordable house, a variety of different things, especially with COVID. We have backyards, we have so many great things, but we're seeing the price of housing going up. Just recently a house that was on sale for $289,000 went over the asking price by $83,000. That's almost a 33% increase. That's what we're seeing in my community, especially for first-time homebuyers, for the people tyring to get into the housing market.
What do you think the federal government needs to do, or what are some of things we should be aware of as we're moving forward, knowing that we have low inventory and that first-time homebuyers are being pushed out of the market because we're seeing such high prices right now? Knowing the financial turbulence facing many people right now, how are they going to be able to get a mortgage?
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Go for it.
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Adding to that, we're just hearing that the cost of softwood lumber is going to go up by about 30%. The cost here in our community, as one of the hardware store owners just explained to me, is going to increase by 30%. If we're trying to build a house and one of the main things it needs is framing and there's a a 30% increase in the cost of creating this house, what are some of the factors we should also look at, and what can we do to help there?
Obviously, that's probably for a trade negotiation that just hasn't been happening, but what can we do there?
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View Karen Vecchio Profile
CPC (ON)
Thank you so much.
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:50
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Thanks very much.
Madame Corriveau, would you agree that if the federal government puts new dollars on the table for provinces, the provinces should not be allowed to cut provincial spending limits on housing? As we put money in the front door for the housing system, the Quebec government should be required not to take money out the back door so that it becomes a wash. Would you agree that's a reasonable request by the federal government?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:51
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Exactly, and in terms of new rent supplement programs, for example, the Canada housing benefit, which aims to subsidize rents for the very individuals you talked about, if the federal government has a program that requires cost-matching dollars from the provinces, should the provinces have to match the new program or should they be allowed to say that we're already doing that and, therefore, we don't have to add any of our new dollars?
Should provinces be brought into a stronger housing system with the federal authority, as long as it's provincially designed and delivered? Would you agree with that?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:53
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Right. For example, would it be a reasonable request by the federal government that it should be spent on rent supplements and should be new money?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:53
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—if we're expending federal dollars on capital programs, is it reasonable, based on your assessment of people with disabilities, to ask for new housing to meet minimum standards around accessibility? For example, the national housing strategy requires all new builds to be 20% accessible. Is that a reasonable social goal that a province could sign onto?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:54
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You do know that someone without disabilities can live in accessible housing. It doesn't require a person with disabilities to live there, but if it's purpose-built from the start, it's there in the future to be used. It's reasonable to set social parameters around social spending, especially when it's addressing people's charter rights. Wouldn't you agree?
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View Adam Vaughan Profile
Lib. (ON)
View Adam Vaughan Profile
2020-08-17 16:56
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You've been very clear—
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