Actions For Housing Now: Our collective challenge to re-couple housing costs and local incomes.

The economic consequences of the affordable housing crisis are vast, particularly in Canada’s urban centres: increasing difficulty of attracting and retaining workers; fiscal over-reliance on real estate activity; historically high household debt; a growing wealth gap between renters and owners; long-term health and criminal-justice costs from homelessness and precarious housing, and more.

Rights-based arguments raise moral duty to safely, adequately and affordably house, but economic arguments for addressing this crisis point in similar directions.

When everyone from major banks and business groups, to organized labour, academics, politicians, housing providers, and housing-rights and poverty-eradication activists say the status quo puts us at risk, you know you have a wicked problem on your hands. And wicked problems don’t get solved in silos.

Our March 29 event had more than 120 informed and engaged citizens address our housing challenges and solutions. Here is a summary of ideas that crossed lines, broke down silos, and excited optimism:

The event was co-presented by: Vancity, Generation Squeeze, SFU Urban Studies, Housing Central, Canadian Housing & Renewal Association, and the SFU Centre for Dialogue.