10/16/2014 11:55 EDT | Updated 12/16/2014 05:59 EST

Doug Ford: Toronto Community Housing repairs a 'top priority'

Doug Ford says he's developed a "passion" for social housing while working alongside his brother over the past four years, which has shown him the help that urgently needs to be provided to residents.

"I have to admit, Rob has had the passion for 14 years and I came along four years ago and I feel his passion," Ford said Thursday, after touring a downtown Toronto Community Housing Corporation property.

While touting some of the changes that have been made at TCHC since his brother became mayor, Ford said many of its properties are in "desperate need" of attention.

If elected mayor later this month, Ford said that repairing TCHC units would be his "top priority" and something he would tackle with the council surrounding him.

"We have to take care of the most vulnerable people in society," he said. "And I've said, they don’t want a handout, they just want a hand up."

Ford then went on to say "99 per cent of these people want to go out, put a good day's work in and give back to their community. And a lot of them do, each and every day."

He was asked what his "definition of a hand up" for TCHC residents.

"A hand up in my opinion is going in there, giving them proper living conditions, making sure they don't have to go into their apartments and have bed bugs, make sure their fridge and stove is working, make sure there isn't any, any roaches or any bugs in their building and making sure their living conditions are clean and safe," Ford said.

Election 'the only poll that counts'

Eleven days before the election, Ford has found himself sitting behind John Tory in many of the polls that have been conducted.

A Forum Research poll conducted Wednesday found that 39 per cent of voters surveyed would vote for John Tory if the election was held that day, compared to 33 per cent for Ford and 23 per cent for Olivia Chow.

Forum said the poll was an interactive voice response telephone survey, in which 1,241, randomly selected Toronto voters participated.

The margin of error for the poll is 2.8 per cent, 19 times out of 20, according to Forum.

Asked about the Forum poll, Ford said "the only poll that counts is on election day."

Ford also said he's been receiving "a great response" when making his rounds on the campaign trail.

The election is on Oct. 27, a week from Monday.