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Ontario co-ops welcome budget commitment to affordable housing funding

Toronto, Ontario, May 1, 2014 – The Co‑operative Housing Federation of Canada’s (CHF Canada) Ontario Region is encouraged by the commitment in today’s budget to Expanding the Investment in Affordable Housing Program.

According to the budget “Ontario is finalizing an agreement with the federal government to extend the IAH program for a further five years. The Ontario government would contribute $80.1 million annually for five years to this program.”

While welcoming the commitment, Nicole Waldron, President of CHF Canada’s Ontario Region notes that with new rental production stagnant and over 158,000 Ontario households on affordable housing wait lists, the need is enormous. “We need to start addressing this issue now,” says Waldron. “Spending money on affordable housing helps stimulate the economy and saves money by reducing demand for various social services.”

Waldron also noted that co‑op housing appreciates the new investment of $50 million annually to create a new poverty reduction fund. “We hope this fund can be used to help address housing needs.”

In a pre-budget submission to the Province, CHF Canada made a number of low- or no-cost suggestions to enhance the production of affordable housing. These included replacing expiring federal housing assistance for low-income households, enacting inclusionary zoning legislation and making government lands available for affordable housing.

CHF Canada’s Ontario Region represents and serves over 500 housing co‑ops in the province, home to some 125,000 Ontarians. Co‑operative housing has a solid track record of over four decades of building and providing safe, secure, affordable housing in member-owned communities.

For more information:

Harvey Cooper, Manager of Government Relations
416-366-1711, ext. 237 or 416-809-5048 (cell)