CHRA launches Housing for All video!

“You plant the seed, you may not see the bloom, but you helped plant that seed for their future.” – Laverne

Laverne has been an essential part of Quint since it was created. She is a founding board member of Quint, and one of the reasons the organization has the pulse and impact it does today.

As a lifelong resident of Pleasant Hill and many years of community organizing in the core neighbourhoods,  Laverne’s leadership was an instrumental part of the vision that led to the formation of Quint. As a member of the founding Board, Laverne helped ensure that the foundation of Quint was solid with a clear strategic plan and policies that have shaped the organization as it developed in the early years.

Housing Experts Warn of Affordable Housing Crisis and Negative Economic Impacts

Over 300,000 households at risk of eviction as federal funding expires.

(April 30, 2015, Winnipeg, MB) Today, the Canadian Housing and Renewal Association (CHRA) launched a national pre-election campaign at its annual Housing and Homelessness Congress in Winnipeg calling on Canadian voters to make housing a top federal election issue this fall, or see the devastating impacts of de-investment in social housing unfold over the coming years.

“If Canada is trying to end homelessness, why would we cut funding for over 300,000 households in need?” said CHRA President Brigitte Witkowski.  “For now, communities are keeping vulnerable tenants in their homes by creating innovative ways of operating and finding new money, but local solutions can’t make up the massive hole in Canada’s housing funding that puts almost a million tenants at risk of economic eviction or even homelessness.”

To help its message go far and wide, CHRA released today a simple two minute “whiteboard video” explaining the social housing crisis in Canada—an issue that is often hard to understand because of the many programs and levels of government involved in its funding and operations.

“We have the perfect storm for a housing crisis,” said Witkowski. “Federal funding is set to expire, cities are becoming more and more unaffordable, and low-income Canadians from coast to coast are experiencing wait times of many years before being able to access social housing. And to top it all off, our current social housing stock is in major need of major repair and renewal.”

Federal investments in housing through operating agreements are set to gradually decline from $1.6 billion in 2015 to $0 in 2040, putting 365,000 Canadian households at risk of economic eviction and possibly homelessness, according to a recent CHRA Report. At its peak, the federal government provided $2 billion annually.

The CHRA and its nationwide member organizations, which collectively house and shelter hundreds of thousands of Canadians, are calling for the federal government to re-invest in social housing by building much-needed new units, renewing existing infrastructure, and by supporting people with the help and rent they need to stay housed.

According to CMHC, 12.5% of Canadian families are in “core housing need” meaning they are spending on average half of their after tax income on housing—well above the recommended 30% threshold—making it difficult to spend on other life necessities such healthy food, clothing, transportation and medication.

“When tax payers are footing the bill of increasingly high reactive justice, healthcare and shelter costs associated with the lack of affordable housing, and when hundreds of thousands of lower-income Canadian adults and children are not able to thrive because of the unstable and sometimes even unsafe housing they must live in, we all pay the social and economic price,” said Witkowski.

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Media contact:
Catherine Fortin LeFaivre, CHRA Public Affairs Director cflefaivre@chra-achru.ca 613-979-8683
Mélina Bouchard, CHRA Communications Assistant mbouchard@chra-achru.ca 613-868-2184

The CHRA’s members and stakeholders include housing providers, municipalities, businesses, all 13 provincial and territorial housing departments, service and support agencies, individuals, students and other housing-related associations and networks.

As the organization continued to grow, Laverne’s position evolved into the  Director of Operations but she continued to oversee and guide the affordable housing program. She is also one of our main social function organizers ensuring that we maintain a strong and cohesive staff team/family, something that she prides herself on. She has worked hard to make sure staff feel included, heard and part of the decision making process within the organization.

Laverne also played a large role in organizing Quint’s community events, what she calls “the fun work”. This included launching and planning the annual Our Core Communities Shine events, numerous community BBQ’s, and anniversary celebrations.

Laverne’s impact is throughout all aspects of Quint’s programming and practices. Her legacy will be that of dedication, compassion, and perseverance, always fighting for the good of her community and the people in it. On behalf of the Quint staff, board of directors and the community at large, Laverne we are so thankful for your leadership and vision to bring Quint to reality. Your contributions will continue to transcend the 26 years you have committed to our west side core communities and beyond.

Happy Retirement!