Families, Indigenous communities and vulnerable Canadians in need of an affordable place to call home can count on long-term funding for community housing in Alberta thanks to an agreement signed today by the federal and provincial governments.
Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Natural Resources, on behalf of Jean-Yves Duclos, Canada’s Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and Lori Sigurdson, Minister of Seniors and Housing, today announced they have reached a bilateral agreement under the National Housing Strategy (NHS). This agreement, which will be cost-shared by the governments of Canada and Alberta, demonstrates a joint commitment to prioritize affordable housing.
The 10-year agreement will invest $678 million to protect, renew and expand social and community housing, and support Alberta’s priorities related to housing repair, construction and affordability. The governments of Canada and Alberta will also work together on the design and implementation of a new Canada Housing Benefit for the province, to provide affordability support directly to families and individuals in housing need. The new agreement marks the beginning of a partnership that will be supported by long-term and predictable funding starting April 1, 2019.
This is a progressive housing agreement that commits the governments of Canada and Alberta to new and higher standards of transparency, public engagement and housing quality, including improved energy efficiency and accessibility. The agreement also acknowledges the importance of prioritizing people most in need, incorporating a human rights-based approach to housing and applying a gender lens to all investments.
“We are striving to ensure that every Canadian has a safe and affordable place to call home. Long-term and predictable funding for housing has been needed for more than a decade. Today, with the Alberta government, we have taken a significant step toward our goal of building strong communities where Canadian families can prosper and thrive, now and for the future. Our government will continue working in partnership with Alberta and other provinces and territories towards a 15 per cent expansion in new affordable housing units and renewing 20 per cent of existing community housing units across the country.”
~Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Natural Resources
“Alberta’s first Affordable Housing Strategy was launched in 2017 with the goal of building and renewing 4,100 units, and that goal is about to be achieved and exceeded. This new agreement means Alberta can continue our bold approach to address the housing needs of Albertans. We want to make sure that all Albertans have a safe place to call home, close to their families and communities. We are eager to continue this important work with our federal partners.”
~Lori Sigurdson, Minister of Seniors and Housing
- The $678-million investment includes $339 million from the Government of Canada and $339 million from the Government of Alberta.
- These investments are in addition to more than $638 million of existing federal housing investments in Alberta through the Social Housing Agreement (SHA) over 10 years. In addition to new construction, combined investments under the NHS bilateral agreement and the SHA will target the preservation of at least 23,700 existing community housing units in Alberta.
- The NHS is an ambitious 10-year, $40-billion+ plan that will reduce or eliminate from housing need 530,000 families across Canada, create 100,000 new housing units, as well as repair and renew more than 300,000 housing units and reduce chronic homelessness by 50 per cent.
- The NHS is built on strong partnerships between the federal, provincial and territorial governments, and continuous engagement with others, including municipalities, Indigenous governments and organizations, and the social and private housing sectors. This includes consultations with Canadians from all walks of life, and people with lived experience of housing need.
- All NHS investments delivered by the federal, provincial and territorial governments will respect the key principles of the NHS that support partnerships, people and communities.
- The Government of Alberta will develop and publish three-year action plans, beginning in 2019-20, setting targets and outlining how it will use federal and cost-matched funding to achieve the desired outcomes.
- Since November 2015, the federal government has invested almost $510 million in housing in Alberta.
- As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
- To find out more about Canada’s National Housing Strategy, visit placetocallhome.ca.
Editor’s Note: This news release was also issued by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation on March 15, 2019.