Earlier this week, the Government of Canada announced its first ever National Housing Strategy (NHS). The NHS is an ambitious 10-year, $40-billion once in a generation investment that will give more Canadians a place to call home.
One the many areas covered by the NHS is a focus on energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. The new Strategy will call for at least a 25% reduction over national building and energy codes for new builds, and at least a similar number reduction relative to past performance for renovations and retrofits.
Canada’s National Housing Strategy sets ambitious targets that will be measured against results every three years. The NHS will reduce chronic homelessness by 50%, and remove 530,000 households out of housing need. It will result in up to 100,000 new affordable housing units and 300,000 repaired or renewed affordable housing units.
Expanded and reformed federal homelessness programming, a new Canada Housing Benefit, and a rights-based approach to housing will ensure that the National Housing Strategy prioritizes the most vulnerable Canadians including women and children fleeing family violence, Indigenous peoples, seniors, people with disabilities, those dealing with mental health and addiction issues, veterans, and young adults.
The National Housing Strategy will invest in the provinces and territories, so that all regions can achieve better and more affordable housing. It invests in municipalities, to empower communities to lead the fight against homelessness. It creates new opportunities for the federal government to innovate through partnerships with the community housing sector, co-operative movement, private sector, and research community.
The National Housing Strategy also respects the Government of Canada’s commitment to a nation-to-nation, Inuit-to-Crown, government-to-government relationship with Indigenous peoples.
(Article courtesy Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation with additional reporting from EnerQuality)