After two exciting years of work, we are bringing our Facilitating Local Responses to Housing Discrimination Project to a close. We are very pleased with the success of this initiative and are exited to share the new resources developed with our partners with you. For this initiative, we collaborated with partner organizations in Ottawa, Hamilton, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, London, Windsor and Toronto. Recognizing that local housing priorities are diverse, our work focused on the specific local needs identified by the communities we worked in, including: challenges faced by urban Inuit, Metis and First Nations renters in Ottawa; discrimination against Aboriginal youth in Thunder Bay; discrimination directed at newcomers in Hamilton; failure to accommodate tenants with mental health disabilities in Sudbury; the housing needs of aging residents in London; discriminatory practices affecting lower-income renters in Windsor; and discriminatory barriers facing women in Toronto.
While discriminatory barriers exist in all housing markets, we know that the specific issues that are acute and emerging differ in communities across the province. Through our project work, we have begun to foster local capacity to address housing instability through community work and knowledge sharing with precariously housed tenants and their housing advocates. Specifically, we have been able to:
• Foster partnerships in seven communities, including six communities outside of Toronto;
• Develop and distribute thousands of resources that are responsive to housing related challenges that are community specific benefiting tenants, service providers, and housing providers who need this information;
• Deliver 26 in person public legal education sessions throughout the province;
• Develop and support Human Rights and Housing Ambassadors in communities across the province; and
• Follow through on conversations and ideas that stretch back to 2012, advancing progress on key issues identified in each community.
After many hours of writing and lots of conversations with our wonderful partners across the province, we developed a large number of new resources for tenants, service providers and housing providers across Ontario. Here they are! Please share them with your family, neighbours, and communities to help fight against housing discrimination.
Self Advocacy Toolkit
Tips for Tenants
We want to sincerely thank all of the partners who helped to make this work a success including: Age Friendly London Network, CMHA Sudbury Manitoulin, Hamilton Community Legal Clinic, Housing Help Hamilton, Kinna-aweya Legal Clinic, Odawa Native Friendship Centre’s Drop In, Sistering, Voices Against Poverty and numerous shelters, drop-ins and community organizations in Toronto.
We also wish to thank the Ontario Trillium Foundation, an agency of the Government of Ontario, for their support of this initiative.
While we are bringing this project to an end, we are looking forward to new opportunities to continue this exciting work in these communities throughout 2017!