I hear loud and clear how concerned Vancouver Quadra residents are about spiraling housing costs and the affordability crisis. I see first-hand how the livability of our neighbourhoods are affected, and the strain on young people and middle income families – and share that concern.
While the previous federal government ignored Vancouver’s housing crisis, the new federal ministers in Ottawa have been listening. My task force of BC’s Liberal MPs proposed solutions to the new government in May, after meeting with local researchers. In June, I co-chaired a Vancouver housing affordability meeting that provided Prime Minister Trudeau with direct and informed input from all perspectives.
Last month, those attending my MP Policy Café on Housing at Kits Neighbourhood House emphasized the need to act now.
I’m pleased our new government is taking action. Canada Revenue Agency added 50 new staff to investigate real estate tax cheating in Metro Vancouver; Finance Minister Morneau created an inter-governmental Panel to coordinate policy fixes; Housing Minister Duclos instructed CMHC to focus on this crisis; and Budget 2016 has added $150 million for affordable housing supply in British Columbia. The work is not yet done, but at least it’s now underway.
MP Joyce Murray