Advocacy and Research
AN URBAN, RURAL AND NORTHERN INDIGENOUS HOUSING STRATEGY
Submission of a brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs
In March 2022, the CHRA Indigenous Caucus submitted a brief to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs that outlines the unique challenges faced by urban, rural, and northern Indigenous housing providers and calls on the government to implement a co-developed and Funded Urban, Rural, and Northern Indigenous Housing Strategy.
2020 Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous Housing Report
In late 2018, the CHRA Indigenous Caucus commissioned a report and survey that looks at the state of urban, rural and northern Indigenous housing in Canada, and provides recommendations on a path forward to improve its state. The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and Indigenous Services Canada provided funding to undertake the work and hired Daniel Brant and Catherine Irwin-Gibson to produce the report overseen by the CHRA Indigenous Caucus Working Group. The report stresses that urban, rural and northern Indigenous housing is facing dramatic challenges in the face of ongoing demand and pressures, but the report also identifies solutions and ways to address these challenges.
The For Indigenous By Indigenous Advocacy Campaign
In late October, the Indigenous Caucus launched its "For Indigenous, By Indigenous" (FIBI) advocacy campaign. The campaign's focus was to raise awareness of the lack of an urban, rural, and northern Indigenous housing policy that was not included in the National Housing Strategy. By the end of 2020, over 10,000 letters had been sent to MPs expressing support for such a strategy! The Indigenous Caucus also initiated a petition which had over 500 signatures.
2018 FIBI Proposal
In June 2018 CHRA and CHRA's Indigenous Housing Caucus Working Group released a proposal for a "For Indigenous, By Indigenous National Housing Strategy" calling on the government to address the housing needs of urban, rural and northern Indigenous families and individuals, including the disproportionate representation of Indigenous Peoples living in homelessness and core housing.
The federal National Housing Strategy unveiled in November 2017 committed to working toward co-developing three distinctions-based First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation housing strategies. However, the Government of Canada's distinctions-based approach risks creating a large service gap for the 87 per cent of Indigenous Peoples not living on reserve lands, but in the urban, rural and northern parts of Canada. To eliminate the service gap, the paper asserts that the federal government must acknowledge and fund a fourth strategy for Indigenous households in need of housing in urban, rural and northern areas.
2017 Policy Paper
The "For Indigenous, By Indigenous" Strategy is the culmination of a two-year process involving the Indigenous Caucus. CHRA and the Indigenous Caucus' first iteration of a strategy to bring forward the housing needs of urban and rural Indigenous peoples began at Indigenous Housing Caucus Day in 2016 and 2017. Following discussions and deliberations, as well as a broader research document, CHRA used the input gathered from Caucus Day delegates to develop a series of recommendations for a distinct urban and rural Indigenous housing strategy. The Indigenous Caucus submitted the policy paper containing recommendations to the Government of Canada in June 2017, which was widely shared and distributed to politicians and senior decision makers.
Resolution to Support an Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous Housing Strategy
During CHRA's Annual General Meeting in April 2018, members passed a strongly worded resolution supporting the development of an urban, rural, northern and metropolitan Indigenous Housing Strategy. It calls on the Government of Canada to develop a strategy that would set forth an objective of raising the standard of Indigenous housing to that of non-Indigenous Canadians within the next 10 years.
Signatories to this declaration are resolved to:
- Campaign - within Canadian society generally, and to the Government of Canada specifically - to adhere to the concept that the only acceptable outcome of the National Housing Strategy regarding Indigenous Peoples is to bring their housing standard to that of non-Indigenous Canadians within the next 10 years;
- Call on the Government of Canada to commit the necessary resources to achieve this goal; and,
- Call on the Government of Canada to develop a fourth Indigenous Housing Strategy to acknowledge, respect and address the housing needs of Indigenous households living in the urban, rural, and northern areas of Canada.
This Resolution is endorsed by the following individuals and organisations:
BC Non-Profit Housing Association
Centretown Citizens Ottawa Corporation
Ganawageh and Ohsto: Seri Urban Homes Inc.
M'akola Housing Society
Manitoba Non-Profit Housing Association
We encourage members and other organizations to officially endorse this Resolution. Add your support to the growing list. Contact email@example.com