SPEAKING OUT: Housing is a Human Right!

Ms. Libby Davies (Vancouver East, NDP): – Mr. Speaker, east Vancouver has suffered from years of government neglect on housing and homelessness. The build up to the 2010 Olympics has made things worse. Since 2003, 1,300 single occupancy rooms have been lost, eliminating most of the last market housing available to Vancouver’s poorest residents.

The federal government has shown again and again it does not care. It pledged another $25 million for the Olympics in the budget, but no new money for affordable housing.

People have had enough. This week the Carnegie Action Project, the Impact on Communities Coalition, PIVOT and UBC students launched a formal human rights complaint to the United Nations.

It exposes how the federal government has failed to uphold the basic human right to housing. The Conservative government must heed the urgent calls from the community and act now to ensure that existing low-income housing is protected and new social housing is built.

No one should be homeless in this wealthy country of Canada.