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HOUSING WAIT LIST AT NEW RECORD HIGH

May 25, 2016

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

171,360 families waiting for social housing in Ontario

WOODSTOCK – Today PC Critic for Municipal Affairs and Housing Ernie Hardeman, Oxford MPP, said that the housing wait list hitting another record high shows that the government is failing Ontario’s most vulnerable families.

“Every year the wait list for social housing in Ontario hits a new record high,” said Hardeman. “The government needs to take real action by addressing housing affordability for all Ontarians and stop the waste and abuse of money intended to provide social housing.”

Today the Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association released their annual Housing Waiting Lists Survey which showed that there are now 171,360 families waiting for affordable housing. The wait list has increased by 40 per cent, or almost 50,000 families over the last 10 years.

“This government makes decision after decision that drives up the cost of living for Ontario families, which results in more and more families needing assistance,” said Hardeman. “Whether it is the spiraling cost of hydro, high taxes, allowing development charges to increase or putting the cost of affordable housing onto the cost of new homes and rentals, the government gives no thought to the impact of their decisions on the cost of housing and this is the result.”

Hardeman has repeatedly pushed the government to end the misuse and waste of housing money by the Housing Services Corporation (HSC). Over the last two years misspending exposed at HSC included a million dollars lost in a solar venture, a questionable investment in Manchester, England and world travel such as multiple trips to England, travel to Australia and a seven-day luxury vacation package for a board member in South Africa.

“When every year there are more and more families in need waiting for housing it is tough to believe anyone could justify spending social housing money on world travel,” said Hardeman. “Families are struggling to put a roof over their heads, but the government is still allowing executives at Housing Services Corporation to jet off to Europe for meetings instead of telling them to just pick up the phone.”

Ontario housing providers are required by the government to buy natural gas and insurance through Housing Services Corporation which uses their monopoly to overcharge housing providers. Toronto Community Housing calculated they would save $6.3 million a year by purchasing gas from another source.

“Life is simply harder under this government and that is resulting in more and more vulnerable families being unable to put a proper roof over their heads,” said Hardeman. “They need a government who understands the importance of keeping life affordable for all families and making sure that taxpayers dollars are actually used to provide the support people need.”

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For more information, contact: Ernie Hardeman, MPP Oxford (416) 325-1239



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