Last week Joy Connelly recounted the availability of government services and affordable housing in the 1950s and 60s and how these once plentiful services look today. The best way to make sense of today's affordable housing shortage is to understand how policy has shifted in Canada over the years. That is just what this chapter on housing in this new How Ottawa Spends book does by looking at Ottawa's housing policy over the past 7 years and comparing it to trends over the past 60.
On December 6th, to commemorate the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women, Sheryl Lindsay contributed to our weekly "Ask the Hub" post. She addressed the pressing concerns surrounding violence against homeless women while looking at the information provided by the YWCA in their Housing First, Women Second report. Although there is much work to be done to ensure that poverty isn't a sentence of sexual exploitation or death for homeless women, there are multi-service agencies out there, such as Sistering and Street Health, who work to assist women in need.
Highlighting Campaign 2000's fight to end child and family poverty, our infographic post last week drew light to government inaction on child poverty in Canada. In 1989, the Canadian House of Commons aimed to end child poverty by 2000. Yet in 2013 we are still faced with reports, like this one from Nova Scotia, indicating that despite having full employment, families still can't get out of poverty. Or this report by the Ontario Association of Food Banks that found that 130,000 children under 18 used food banks on a monthly basis. Just as this "Towards a Poverty Elimination Strategy for The City of Toronto" document points out, there needs to be government funding and proactive government support in areas like employment, income, support, housing, community services and support programs, and public transit to curb serious poverty in Canada.