The City of Vancouver is revisiting the definition of “social housing.” Activists fear that a new definition will water down the definition of social housing that guarantees housing for low income families with something more palatable for developers.
Housing affordability has recently become a major issue in Vancouver due to the rising cost of homes. This continues to fester on several fronts. A recent Vancity study has shown that the average cost of a detached home will cost $2.1 million by 2030. My new friend Andy Yan warns that the previous $1-million “line” (Ontario Street) that once divided the city is now disappearing as housing prices continue to rise. Oh, and homelessness is still a real problem despite goals to end it by 2015. We are truly in a housing crisis.
And now the very definition of what constitutes housing affordability is being questioned. What next, Vancouver? Will we as a community step up to the challenge and ensure that the basic right to shelter and housing is preserved? Or will we let the chasm widen between rich and poor?