Towards a More Equitable Housing System: Is Vancouver a City for Renters?
Part of The Future We Want: The Change We Need, an event series hosted by the City of Vancouver in partnership with SFU.

Beginning in the early 1970s the percentage of Vancouver households living in rental units has been greater than 50%. Nevertheless, renters consistently face difficulties in finding housing that is adequate, stable and secure, with, in more recent years, rental affordability becoming a particularly challenging and detrimental issue for many households. While some in the city may strive for home ownership, data tells us that this possibility has become increasingly out of reach, even for those with moderate incomes.

Given the reality that a majority of Vancouverites will most likely continue to live in rental housing, what does this mean for the next generation, for seniors and families, for low-income, racialized and marginalized households, and for the many others who do not see a secure housing future in Vancouver?

How must the City of Vancouver think differently about housing and the housing market to better meet the needs of its residents, ensuring priority for those with the greatest need?

What is required of a new city-wide plan to ensure the urgent and transformative change necessary to establish an equitable housing system?

Join us to discuss these questions at the second event of The Future We Want: The Change We Need series.

Speakers
Evan Siddall President and CEO, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Evan is President and CEO of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), a role he has held since 2014. Evan leads a team of housing experts who share a single goal: that “By 2030, everyone in Canada will have a home that they can afford and that meets their needs.”

Khelsilem Councillor, Squamish Nation

Khelsilem is Squamish and Kwakwa̱ka̱’wakw raised in North Vancouver, British Columbia. As the Squamish Nation Councillor, his lifelong work has been focused on governance, Indigenous languages, and dreams of progressive social change. He has served on various committees, including: Governance, Finance & Audit, Human Resources, and Housing Authority Development.

Barbara Steenbergen Member of the Executive Committee, International Union of Tenants (IUT)

Barbara Steenbergen has been committed to tenant protection for more than 19 years, starting in 2001 as head of the presidential office of the German Tenants’ Union in Berlin and as political coordinator for energy policy and international affairs. Since 2013 she has been a member of the Executive Board of the International Union of Tenants.

Leilani Farha Global Director, THE SHIFT

Leilani Farha is the former UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Housing and Global Director of The Shift. She has helped develop global human rights standards on the right to housing, including through her topical reports on homelessness, the financialization of housing, informal settlements, rights-based housing strategies, and the first UN Guidelines for the implementation of the right to housing.

William Azaroff CEO, Brightside Community Homes Foundation

William is the CEO of Brightside Community Homes Foundation, an organization dedicated to making housing accessible for those who struggle to meet the demands of market housing in Vancouver. He was a long-time executive at Vancity, performing many senior leadership roles in his 14 years at the credit union.

Andy Yan Director, The City Program at Simon Fraser University

Andy Yan is the director of The City Program at Simon Fraser University. Born and raised in Vancouver, Andy Yan has extensively worked in the non-profit and private urban planning sectors with projects in the metropolitan regions of Vancouver, San Francisco, New York City, Los Angeles and New Orleans. Andy is a registered professional planner with the Canadian Institute of Planners.

Moderators
Meg Holden Professor and Director, SFU Urban Studies

Meg Holden is professor and director of the urban studies program and professor in the department of geography at SFU. Meg is an urban environmental pragmatist. Her engaged research program examines urban policy, planning and social aspects of sustainable development intentions and transitions in cities and communities.

Kerry Gold Journalist and Housing Columnist, Globe & Mail

Kerry Gold is a Vancouver-born journalist who’s written a weekly housing column for the Globe and Mail for the last 13 years. She also writes investigative pieces for the Walrus, and has written for many other publications, including MSN, Yahoo, McLean’s, MoneySense, BC Business, the Toronto Star, L.A. Weekly and Variety.

Date: Thursday, January 21, 2021
Time: 3:00-5:00 PM Pacific Time

You can register for this event by clicking this link.

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