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Battle Against Homelessness

The battle against homelessness continues throughout the province and here in Simcoe-Grey. MPP Brian Saunderson says the challenge presented by the homeless situation represents a combination of health care, mental health support and housing.

“What we’re seeing in this budget is unprecedented in housing. We are spending $202 million a year over the next three years, so that is going to be over $600 million dedicated to attacking homelessness. Homelessness is a very complex and complicated issue. Supply and demand is one aspect of it but the others in terms of supports and protecting those that are of risk for housing security is a very, very important topic. For example, we are seeing just in Simcoe County, they are relying on funding from the province. The budget last year was about $11 million for homelessness prevention and housing and this year it will be $21 million, an increase of 86 percent. The services we provide and the funding we provide through the counties and through the municipalities are critical, I think, to making sure that the lives of our residents are sustainable and affordable.”

Simcoe-Grey MPP Brian Saunderson and Professional Public Policy Advisor Trent Gow discuss this and other matters dealing with the Ontario budget in the latest edition of the POINT2POINT podcast. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN.

Simcoe County releases homelessness prevention strategy

The County of Simcoe recently released its homelessness prevention strategy, a 10-point plan designed specifically to assist with the prevention of homelessness across the region and to help vulnerable residents and county communities.

“This strategy makes affordable housing even more attainable by increasing supply, creating “deep rent subsidies,” increasing eviction prevention services and improving available shelter. It commits the County to find new housing opportunities, enhancing community shelter services and standards, and improving safety and well-being throughout the community.”

The County of Simcoe’s investment and support strategy was approved by the Province and has received initial endorsement from Committee of the Whole, which includes representatives from all sixteen member municipalities and two separated cities, Barrie and Orillia.