Doug Downey

Providing More Affordable Housing in Barrie

eAwaz Local News

Province’s investment will create safe and secure housing for Indigenous families at risk of homelessness

Barrie — The Ontario government is providing more than $800,000 to help create two affordable housing units in Barrie.

Through a partnership between the Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services and the Barrie Native Friendship Centre, this investment will help provide better, safer and secure access to housing to more Indigenous people who need it. The house was acquired through an acquisition of a residential property with two units. The duplex home was fully renovated, the main floor unit has three bedrooms, and the secondary basement unit has two bedrooms. The housing units are for tenants who are Indigenous and/or families at risk of homelessness or who are currently underhoused, and people fleeing domestic violence are also eligible. Rents will be affordable and include utilities.

“Indigenous people looking for supportive housing often struggle to find culturally appropriate accommodations that meet their unique needs. The project we’re celebrating is a great example of how our government is partnering with Indigenous communities in Barrie, and across Ontario to deliver housing solutions for the most vulnerable members of our communities,” said Michael Parsa, Associate Minister of Housing. “Through innovation, collaboration and commitment, we’re ensuring every Ontarian has a safe place to call home.”

As highlighted in Ontario’s Action Plan: Protecting People’s Health and Our Economy, today’s announcement is part of the province’s Social Services Relief Fund, which has provided over $1.2 billion of support throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, to help municipal service managers and Indigenous program partners create longer-term housing solutions and help vulnerable Ontarians, including those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

The Ontario government is also investing an additional $25 million annually in our new Homelessness Prevention Program. The new program simplifies and streamlines operations so municipal service managers can spend less time on paperwork and more time working with their clients to help find housing and other supports and help those at risk of homelessness stay in their homes. The additional funding brings Ontario’s total yearly investment in the program to close to $464 million.

“Today is a great day for Barrie. This project will provide safe and secure accommodation for Indigenous people at risk of homelessness. Working in collaboration with all our partners, we’re ensuring residents of Barrie have a place to call home,” said Doug Downey, Member of Provincial Parliament for Barrie – Springwater – Oro-Medonte.

The Ontario government has also increased supports under the Indigenous Supportive Housing Program from $13.3 million in 2021-22 to $30 million this fiscal year. This program provides housing assistance and support services to Indigenous people who are homeless or at imminent risk of homelessness, especially those experiencing chronic homelessness, youth homelessness, and homelessness following transitions from provincially funded institutions.