Trudeau’s record on housing a big disappointment

Dear Justin Trudeau,

I want you to know before I begin this that I have voted against my own chosen party twice now to get you in and keep you in as our PM.

I also did the same thing for your father. For the most part I believe you are doing a great job, I’m proud of you, you are a rock star amongst politicians, and you must be glad your great hair hasn’t turned grey yet.

The one area of disappointment I must address is the lack of housing in every area of Canada. Over the past 20 years I have watched unfettered property flipping for profit (why is this still legal?) and endured endless committees to study the problem. Here in Campbell River our housing situation was called an emergency two years ago, there is just no place to move to, and it is causing so much grief that we have just about giving up hope. People who have wanted to build trailer parks and sites for 5th wheels and campers (my dream) have been stonewalled by local governments, and most sites don’t accept them if they are more than a couple of years old, fearing unsightliness of the property. Very few people can afford a mortgage on a new 5th wheel. This issue has made me bitter and cynical for the first time in my life, I don’t shine as brightly as I used to. I spent five months homeless a few years back, and I am so grateful that I have a home. Our governments at all levels want to pass off the issue to each other, it is systemic, and developers don’t want to tackle it because there is no money in social/affordable housing. Justin, the line between the rich and poor is now razor thin, the middle class has disappeared for the most part. I used to think in terms of different social classes, but now even affordable housing is social housing…there is no difference, and every Canadian needs a home, regardless of background or life choices or income or social standing. On that I’m sure we can agree.

All these committees and collaborations have resulted in nothing being done about the issue, it’s all talk, endless reports and band-aid short term solutions. It infuriates me, all the money spent on stopgap solutions, committees, temporary housing is such a waste of money that could be used to actually build some housing…to me it seems like this whole mess of homelessness and poverty is turning into an industry in itself, all these tax deductable measures financed by good people expecting more than words eventually, and eventually never comes.

Like a lot of Canadians I am disgusted with the money we throw out there for the rest of the world and other causes and issues. I used to be so proud of us, now I just think it is a taxpayers waste of money when we should be building proper housing for our own people first, let the rest of the world look after itself and get the structures up.

… priorities, you know?

Common sense, housing being the next thing imprinted on our genes, right after food.

I’m sick of all that money wasted on outside causes, not nearly as proud of us for bringing in the bereft of the world, our immigration problems directly affecting this issue…and you want to bring in how many more people by 2030? How many millions of people? This is insane, such madness, and it affecting people to the core, we just don’t have the confidence in our governments any more in this area. Next election I will be voting for the party with the best housing plan, and getting the structures up in the least amount of time. Enough of the immigration ‘till we get caught up and ahead of the issue, I just cannot support immigration any more, a major paradigm shift for me, and not pleasant. I resent those people coming here and taking up our housing when so many people born here are without. I know this is not PC, but I just don’t care any more, and I’m sure I am not alone, there are a lot of bitter people out here Justin.

I am not coming to the table empty handed, I wrote for the paper for years here, wrote about the issue ‘till people were sick of hearing the same things over and over, and I have recently been appointed to another working group on the housing issue. I met a wonderful person, a local developer as committed to the cause and with one of the affordable housing committees, and he has somewhat given me back some hope and faith for the future; we had a bit of a false start there once, but there will be next times…maybe it is time to start taxing the churches specifically for housing, as well as all these charities bringing in the big money, and expropriate any property owned by them and provincial/federal/local governments and dedicate them to housing, besides a moratorium on immigration, and an end to the endless giving to other countries and causes until this issue is addressed and history…we could do it, with the proper focus and a few bright minds.

Communist China says it has eliminated homelessness, and in Europe 40 per cent of housing is government funded, there is no reason we could not do the same thing here, (except for the greed and profit thing). We could adapt to new types of housing, (like the renovated shipping containers and other ideas like pre-fab tiny homes if we can get architectural adaptation and all levels of government to cooperate), and a central housing registry might help, I personally know many people who would relocate to a different area to just to have a home, especially areas that have a degree of employment opportunities…what is the use of moving to where the work is if there is no housing available?

We could do it if we wanted to, Justin, but I’m not holding my breath waiting…the Empire state building was built in a year, how long before we see any progress? I just don’t believe in governments like I used to, and that is just a shame, and a waste of a possible voter next time around. I hope you get to read this with your own eyes, but I’m sure not counting on it, or any response for that matter. I really believed in you, prime minister, not so much now.

Guy Walter Banks