Kick Off of the Housing for All Post-Election Week Blitz
Wednesday, November 18, 2015
Take Action November 20-27
Media advisory for November 20 event in Ottawa
Release of mandate letters
Last week, ministerial mandate letters were made public—a first in Canadian history. These documents lay out the Prime Minister’s expectations and instructions for each of his ministers. CHRA was encouraged to see housing mentioned in four separate portfolios. We were also pleased to see such an emphasis placed on transparency and collaboration to achieve government objectives.
Through these directives, it was made evident that the housing sector should be working closely with both the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, who will be working on creating and implementing a National Housing Strategy together.
The mandate letters of the Honourable Bill Morneau Minister of Finance, and the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs also mentioned housing priorities.
It should be noted that CHRA and local members had meaningful discussions with all of these four ministers in the context of its Housing for All Roundtables.
Read all 30 ministerial mandate letters.
On December 4, the Governor General will deliver the Speech from Throne, articulating the federal government’s priorities for the 42nd parliament. While CHRA and its many partners are working hard to promote our sector’s priorities on the Hill, we need your help to ensure that Housing for All messages continue to be heard throughout the country by as many federal elected officials as possible. After all, your local voice is the most powerful.
What can you do?
During the Housing for All Post-Election Week Blitz, November 20-27, we ask that you get in touch with your local Member of Parliament to stress the importance of immediate and long term federal re-investment in affordable housing, including social housing.
- Find out the name of your M.P. and how to contact him/her. Type in your postal code on the home page of www.parl.gc.ca. An email address will be displayed when you click on your M.P.’s name. Generally, M.P. email addresses follow this rule: email@example.com
- Send your M.P. an email using the message below. You may also elect to draft your own message, however, please keep it short and to the point. The most important part to include is in bold.
- Please cc CHRA (firstname.lastname@example.org) so we can keep stock of our grassroots activity progress.
- Share this with your contacts and friends, urging them to do the same this week.
Suggested message to your M.P.
Dear Mr/Ms. [XXX],
Congratulations on your [election/re-election] as Member of Parliament.
My name is [XX] and I am a constituent in your riding.
[Insert your role in the community/ job title/ other relevant background info, etc.]
I am pleased to see the federal government commit to the creation and implementation of a National Housing Strategy. This is a step in the right direction.
However, I continue to be very worried about the lack of supply of social housing in [insert riding name], and throughout Canada, as thousands of vulnerable families are currently on long waiting lists and are without a safe and affordable place to call home. Social housing gives safety and stability to people with lower incomes. It includes non-profit, public, co-op, supportive, and urban Aboriginal housing.
On December 4th, I ask that a commitment to federal re-investment in affordable housing, and especially in social housing, be articulated in the Speech from the Throne. Specifically, I ask the government to commit to: building new social housing, repairing and maintaining exiting social housing, and supporting people with the rent subsidies and the support they need to stay housed.
I would be happy to provide you with more background on this issue, especially as it relates to our local context. You can also view this one-pager which explains the current housing affordability crisis.
I hope I can count on you to champion the cause of Housing for All within your caucus and within our community.
[Insert your name and contact info]