Nova Scotia Affordable Housing Commission mandate doesn’t go far enough, says local anti-poverty group

The mandate of the Affordable Housing Commission of Nova Scotia is inadequate and will not meet the needs of Nova Scotians struggling with housing, says a group of anti-poverty organizations.

“They really seem to only be focused on the supply side of the housing issue. And they are not looking at the deep extensive poverty that folks live in in Nova Scotia and the impact that that has on securing safe, affordable housing,” says Alec Stafford, chairman of the Nova Scotia Action Coalition for Community Well-Being and the executive director of the Nova Scotia College of Social Workers.

“If we are to address the housing crisis, then we also need to be addressing income levels and supports, minimum wage, housing-first initiatives, mental health, all of those concerns, and that does not appear to be in the mandate of the current housing commission.”

The Nova Scotia Affordable Housing Commission was launched in November 2020 in response to rising rents and an increase in the number of evictions. The commission was “mandated to identify sustainable, and actionable long-term solutions to increase the supply of, and access to affordable housing.” At the same time, the province also introduced a two per cent cap on rent increases and a ban on renovictions, but only until February 2022, or until the pandemic state of emergency is lifted.

The commission is currently accepting submissions for feedback and suggestions by phone, email, and postal mail… [Read More]