The Future of Affordable Housing
COWICHAN REGION AFFORDABLE HOUSING STRATEGY
Eight Strategic Directions
The following strategies were developed as the result of community consultations including community forums, surveys, a review of previous housing reports and meetings with local government representatives, non-government organizations (non-profit organizations), local business organizations, planners and developers.
These strategies explain the role that local government, non-profit organizations, businesses, and community members can take to improve the supply of affordable housing.
Housing is the cornerstone of healthy communities. This is a ‘made in the Cowichan Valley strategy’ sensitive to the unique needs of the people who live and work here.
Strategy One: Adopt policies that promote affordable housing throughout the Region.
To ensure that housing is available to everyone in the Cowichan Region, a focused effort will be required from all government jurisdictions. Affordable housing policies should:
Strategy Two: Build partnerships with local government, community groups, non-profit organizations and local businesses to create affordable housing.
Strategy Three: Build support for affordable housing by raising community awareness.
The ‘not in my backyard’ sentiment blocks affordable housing initiatives. Working together with local communities fosters understanding and greater involvement.
Strategy Four: Ensure that affordable housing needs are met through the four pillars of sustainability: social equity, economic health, cultural vitality, and environmental responsibility.
Community building calls for a ‘whole systems’ perspective. This ensures that affordable housing will meet current needs without compromising future generations.
Strategy Five: Prevent the loss of existing affordable housing stock.
Current rental and affordable housing stock is aging and in need of repair and maintenance. Related policies should consider:
Strategy Six: Advocate to the federal and provincial governments for affordable housing on behalf of the Cowichan Region.
Strategy Seven: Continue to monitor the affordable housing funding practices of other regional governments.
Extend the idea of partnerships to include multiple methods of funding beyond federal and provincial grants.
Strategy Eight: Work closely with the Cowichan Region First Nations governments to ensure that affordable housing needs for aboriginal peoples are met both on and off the reserve.
Aboriginal people comprise over 13 percent of the population of the Cowichan Region. They are disproportionately represented within the population who require affordable housing.