Canada Homelessness

I Am Living Proof There Can Be Hope After Trauma

Street Haven | Posted 11.19.2015 | Canada Living
Street Haven

To everyone around me, it looked like our family had it all. The truth was that I lived in a house that was filthy and piled high with debris and animal waste. I was 11years old when my father began to sexually abuse me. I had become accustomed to keeping so many secrets by then that I just added this one to the list. I hoped the abuse would stop. I was terrified and lonely. I am living proof that it takes a community to lift a person up. The day I left my abusive family home was the day I stepped into uncertainty and poverty.

Canada Should Look To The U.S.'s Legal Struggles Over Mental Illness Policies

Susan Inman | Posted 11.14.2015 | Canada Living
Susan Inman

Families in Canada fighting for evidence-based care for relatives living with psychotic disorders should see the tenacity of the American families. And Democratic Americans abroad, like me, can let our representatives know that we want the mental health system to begin to meet the needs of people with the most severe illnesses.

Lowdown Tracks Lifts Up The Homeless And All Of Us

Todd Herron | Posted 11.09.2015 | Canada
Todd Herron

Wendell (Woody) Cormier, a paranoid schizophrenic homeless man from Toronto, got up to the microphone last Thursday and told the audience bluntly, "If you force a man to stay outside and freeze to death, and then blame the cold; it's like making a man walk the plank and blaming the water for him drowning."

It's Cheaper To House The Homeless Than To Keep Them On The Streets

Now What With Ryan Duffy | Posted 10.22.2015 | Canada Impact

The cure for chronic homelessness is so obvious, you almost don't want to say it out loud.

We Need a National Housing Strategy

Ritika Goel | Posted 10.13.2015 | Canada Politics
Ritika Goel

My patient reminded me that day of something that I have always known -- access to housing is not just a matter of rights and justice, it's also a matter of health. When his mental health deteriorates, he can indeed access the hospital care he needs, but if providing him access to housing can help keep him healthier, costs us less, and is the right thing to do, then why not do it for everyone? This federal election, when we vote, we must vote for housing for all, and no matter who is elected, we must call on them to take action immediately.

Saskatoon's Housing Crisis Is a Health Emergency

Dr Ryan Meili | Posted 10.02.2015 | Canada Impact
Dr Ryan Meili

Despite a strong economy, Saskatchewan has a deficit in access to safe and affordable housing. The Saskatoon Housing Initiatives Partnership performed a "point-in-time" count of people without a home on a given night and found 405 people. The number from these counts has steadily increased. What's especially disturbing is that 45 of the homeless individuals in this year's count were children. Across Canada, an estimated 235,000 people will experience homelessness in the course of a year, with 35,000 homeless on any given night. Beyond those who are homeless, many Canadians struggle to maintain the housing they have.

Let's Make Affordable Housing a Federal Election Issue

Sen. Art Eggleton | Posted 10.01.2015 | Canada Politics
Sen. Art Eggleton

There are 235,000 Canadians who experience homelessness in the course of a year. And 1.6 million more Canadians are at risk of losing their homes according to CMHC. All this misery while study after study shows that it is cheaper for the public purse to house someone than leave them on the street, moving in and out of shelters, emergency hospital rooms and even jails in some cases. I think we all understand intuitively the importance of having decent shelter. A home anchors a person, anchors a family.

A Bowl of Soup For Humanity

Jordan Sterling | Posted 09.30.2015 | Canada Living
Jordan Sterling

I had a very interesting experience yesterday at work during a shift that was otherwise destined for infinite nothingness. I'm a bartender at a corp...

Taking Human Rights Seriously Can Help End Poverty in Canada

Michele Biss | Posted 09.03.2015 | Canada Impact
Michele Biss

It's nowhere to be seen: human rights being used to address poverty in Canada. Human rights are a key tool in poverty reduction work in Canada, placing the most marginalized at the centre of policy -- but in communities across the country, it seems as though governments are not connecting the dots.

Arrested for Sleeping? We Shouldn't Criminalize Homelessness

Jino Distasio | Posted 09.02.2015 | Canada Impact
Jino Distasio

As humans, we need to sleep. It is a biologically unavoidable act. Yet, on both sides of the border, "sleeping" can be considered a criminal act, especially if you are homeless and have no place to rest your head other than in public spaces such as parks. How have cities and states been able to impose and enforce by-laws and ordinances that clearly violate one's right to occupy public space for this very purpose? This summer several cases are putting this longstanding question to the legal test. The outcome might just change the way we view homelessness.

I May Not Look Homeless, But I Am

Street Haven | Posted 08.21.2015 | Canada Living
Street Haven

A lot of people have the perception that shelter life today is for the junkie, the uneducated, the criminal or the battered wife seeking refuge from her abusive partner. In my experience, most of the people I have met in the shelter system are there for a variety of reasons. In the shelter I have met bank tellers, writers, students and even retirees.

Joshua Ostroff

We Could End Homelessness In Canada. But It'll Cost You $46 | Joshua Ostroff | Posted 08.24.2015 | Canada Impact

"It wasn't like one day I woke up and I was homeless. Every year things just got tighter and tighter, it was just that one more step down the ladder."

Canada Needs To Better Protect the Homeless During Heatwaves

Jino Distasio | Posted 07.23.2015 | Canada Politics
Jino Distasio

Governments of all levels across the country need to consider the mounting evidence for increasing climate variability and create actionable plans for vulnerable persons to ensure that those most likely to be adversely effected by extreme weather events are protected with the right supports. This must start with ending homelessness for as many Canadians as possible and closing the widening income gap that pushes far too many into poor quality housing.

We Must Remember Homeless LGBTQ2S Youth During Pride

Alex Abramovich | Posted 06.19.2015 | Canada Impact
Alex Abramovich

The month of Pride is a time for LGBTQ2S individuals to not only say who we are; but to also celebrate and be proud of who we are. Pride month is meant to remind us that we are real and that we matter, however, not all members of our community are seen; not all are celebrated; many are silenced and marginalized, made to feel that they are not real and that they do not belong.

Medicine Hat Proves Idealism and Realism Can Walk Hand in Hand

Craig and Marc Kielburger | Posted 06.19.2015 | Canada Impact
Craig and Marc Kielburger

This year, Medicine Hat became the first city in Canada to effectively end homelessness. Almost 900 people in this small town of 61,000 have been placed in rent-free apartments or houses. And the benefits are clear: police calls and hospital emergency room visits are down. "You're going to end homelessness? Yeah ok, good one," he recalls thinking. But the society argued that the $20,000 per year cost of housing someone was as much as four times less than the expense of policing and health care when that person lived on the streets.

Campaign Sets Out To House 20,000 People Across Canada In 3 Years

The Huffington Post Canada | Jesse Ferreras | Posted 06.17.2015 | Canada Impact

As many as 30,000 Canadians spend every night without a place to call home.

Mental Illness Is Blind to Socioeconomic Class Distinctions

Sandra Charron | Posted 06.14.2015 | Canada Living
Sandra Charron

Before any social progress can be made, mental illness has to be acknowledged as a real and powerful determinant of health which affects all social classes, but plays a greater role not only in the lives of those who are displaced, but in some cases also contributes to their displacement and state of living. It is those living on the streets who are the most affected by the stigma associated with mental illness. Yet the stigma is alive and well for those of us who are fortunate enough to continue working or have a strong support system advocating for us while we too struggle to climb the walls of our own personal hell.

We Need to Channel Our Online Outrage Toward Important Social Issues

Joseph Ottorino | Posted 05.13.2015 | Canada Impact
Joseph Ottorino

How is it that we become outraged by one tweet from a celebrity and not by any number of grave issues and epidemics facing society as a whole? After all, there is certainly no shortage of worthwhile causes to support. One issue that's certainly got my attention is youth homelessness in Canada.

When Canada's Homeless Read 'Mean Tweets,' There's Nothing To Laugh About

The Huffington Post Canada | Arti Patel | Posted 04.01.2015 | Canada Impact

A new take on the very popular YouTube series.

Ontario Spending More Than Half A Billion To Fight Homelessness

CP | The Canadian Press | Posted 03.30.2015 | Canada Politics

TORONTO - Ontario municipalities will be getting more than half a billion dollars from the province to help people and families at risk of homelessnes...

It's About Time Canada Stood Up for Homeless LGBT Youth

Alex Abramovich | Posted 05.25.2015 | Canada Impact
Alex Abramovich

On March 11, 2015, Toronto City Council finally approved funding for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and 2-spirit (LGBTQ2S) youth transitional housing. Although I am extremely disappointed that LGBTQ2S youth homelessness has been inadequately addressed for so many years, I am grateful that there is more understanding and awareness of this social justice crisis. I am also grateful that more organizations are now committed to developing campaigns and programs for LGBTQ2S youth experiencing homelessness.

Creating a Haven for Young Trafficking Victims in Toronto

Kevin M. Ryan | Posted 05.04.2015 | Canada
Kevin M. Ryan

We at Covenant House worked closely with the two young survivors at the heart of Toronto's first criminal prosecution to lead to a sex trafficking con...

2 Plead Guilty To Murder For Setting Homeless Man On Fire

CP | The Canadian Press | Posted 02.23.2015 | Canada

KENTVILLE, N.S. - Two Nova Scotia men who doused a homeless man with gas and set him on fire with a cigarette lighter while he was sleeping in a bus s...

What Can We Do About Toronto's Persisting Homelessness Problem?

Dave Colangelo | Posted 04.10.2015 | Canada
Dave Colangelo

There are over 5,000 homeless individuals in Toronto; over 400 sleeping outside on an average night and these numbers continue to grow. Across Canad...

Tim Hortons Apologizes To Homeless Man Who Had Water Dumped On Him

CP | The Canadian Press | Posted 04.10.2015 | Canada British Columbia

VANCOUVER - Tim Hortons has apologized after the owner of a Vancouver location was seen dumping a bucket of water on a homeless man sleeping outside."...