For Immediate Release
August 9, 2021

Burrill NDP should apologize for inflammatory rhetoric

Gary Burrill and the NDP suggesting that investment property owners aren’t “real people” is inflammatory and divisive.

The comments were contained in an August 2 news release from the party that criticized “landlords and developers” and repeated that the NDP were on the side of “real people”.

Kevin Russell, executive director of the Investment Property Owners Association of Nova Scotia (IPOANS), wrote a letter to the NDP leader on Thursday asking for Burrill and the party to apologize.

“Our members are ‘real people’ – more than 90 per cent of property owners in this province are owner/operators who work hard and take significant financial risk to build their small businesses,” said Russell. “For some of our members who are either new Canadians or second-generation Canadians, the NDP’s rhetoric around ‘real people’ has discriminatory undertones.

For IPOANS members who have emigrated to Canada or who are the children or grandchildren of immigrants, Mr. Burrill and the NDP’s suggestion that they somehow aren’t ‘real people’ is hurtful and unnecessarily divisive.”

Russell said regardless of the different policies advanced in this election around affordable housing, it’s important that everyone focus on evidence-based decision-making and having all the relevant participants in the sector at the table.

“Our members consider it a privilege to provide housing for tens of thousands of Nova Scotians. We have advanced evidence-based solutions and have repeatedly offered to work with anybody to help the affordable housing crisis in this province,” added Russell. “Regardless of the outcome of the election, IPOANS remain committed to working with anyone and everyone to have thoughtful dialogue towards action on housing, instead of dealing with populist, divisive politically-motivated attacks.”

According to a report by economics research firm Gardner Pinfold Consulting “Rental Housing Affordability in Nova Scotia” commissioned by IPOANS, the long-term solution is a $1.6 billion 10-year plan is required to make meaningful differences for many Nova Scotia households facing persistent affordability issues.

Download Gardner Pinfold Report, Rental Housing Affordability in Nova Scotia, www.ipoans.ca