I missed having to use this by a hair’s breadth.

As it is, I am couch surfing at a friend’s place and my belongings are in storage while I wait for the unit I have finally secured after five months of searching to become available. This new place is half the size and the same price I was paying for the home I was renting before.

Affordable housing has become non-existent in this city. Lots of housing but it’s luxury condos and sprawling suburbia.

It is not just the down and out that are impacted. It is those who are paid minimum wage or little more. It is the people who work in retail, hospitality, call centres, home care — the people who serve us all.

City council will vote a final time on Monday to borrow $24.4 million to help develop a couple of apartment complexes on a single property – one for seniors and the other for single mothers and their children.

The buildings will be on Bonaccord St. The plan is to convert the McRae building – the empty Fleming College trade school – into 38 apartments for single moms and their kids.

In addition, a new six-storey building will be constructed on the large gravel parking lot of the McRae building; it will have 81 apartments for seniors. The two buildings will be connected by breezeway.

Peterborough Housing Corporation (PHC) – the city and county’s largest social housing provider – will operate the homes. The city is the sole shareholder of PHC.

B.C. Housing has purchased the former Motel Super 8 in Penticton, with plans of turning it into housing for those in need of mental health and addictions services and others in housing crisis.

The conversion of the 54-unit motel has been a bit of an open secret within the city, but was finally confirmed this week with a rezoning application for Tuesday’s council meeting.

The property will also be the new home for the city’s homeless and emergency weather response shelters, which are currently operating at Compass House in the downtown.

“The facility will be run by the Penticton and District Society for Community Living in partnership with Interior Health, who will be managing the units intended for persons with mental health issues and the Salvation Army, who will be operating the emergency shelter and emergency weather shelter,” a City of Penticton staff report reads.

Hailey Eldershaw, 23, said she received a warning from Charlottetown Police Services for violating the ban on panhandlers.

“They are planning to charge me if they see me protesting again,’’ Eldershaw said. “My warning states that I am in violation of the (City of Charlottetown’s) nuisance bylaw, when I did no such thing.’’

Eldershaw, who suffers from depression, lost her job at a call centre.

“Since then, I’ve lost my apartment, and welfare won’t assist you without a permanent address. I had to be told by someone on the street about intent to rent forms, but they capped me at $360. You can’t even find a room in Charlottetown for under $400.’’

A portion of the city-owned Beavermead Campground has been temporarily set aside for homeless people.

Five of the campground’s 18 non-serviced campsites – meant for tents, as opposed to recreational vehicles – are serving as campsites for the homeless.

The city reserved the campsites about 10 days ago. On Thursday, there were several tents set up and about five people camping there.

Peterborough has seen an acute shortage of apartments available for rent this spring and summer.

The vacancy rate for a one-bedroom apartment is around 1.3 per cent this summer – down from 5.8 per cent three years ago.

From January through June, 46 homeless people have died across the city, according to new information released Wednesday by Toronto Public Health in an ongoing initiative to monitor these deaths.

Second-quarter data from an expanded tracking program, led by Toronto Public Health and supported by about 200 health and social service agencies, reported that 19 deaths occurred from April 1 through June 30. The median age for the deceased during this period was 48.5.

“The numbers are shocking and deeply disturbing,” said Councillor Joe Cressy (Trinity-Spadina). “If the test of a city is how well it cares for the most vulnerable, these deaths show we are failing.”


Building on yesterday’s announcement from the City of Vancouver to enable 72,000 new units of housing across the city, today staff presented plans and put forward bold new actions to address the housing crisis for the city’s most vulnerable populations. By increasing the City’s target for new units of social and supporting housing by 50 per cent, addressing the immediate needs of more than 600 homeless residents, and proposing strategies to enhance and maintain existing rental properties, the City is prioritizing action to create the right supply of housing, with the right supports.

“There is a huge need for housing affordable for people on low incomes, and we’re not letting up on finding solutions to help people off the street and into housing, and boost housing security for those on lower incomes,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson.