VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Talk of the opioid crisis has made its way into Canada’s largest affordable housing conference.
Dean Pogas with the BC Non-Profit Housing Association, says about 1,300 delegates will gather in Richmond for three days starting Sunday. Their aim is to learn from top thinkers in housing and find innovative approached to addressing the province’s affordable housing crisis.
“They can look at all sorts of issues involving housing, addiction, mental illness and homelessness. What we do know, is by 2016 in the province BC we had a backlog of affordable housing of almost 80,000 units.”
“A lot of our non-profit housing providers are sort of the frontline staff to these problems. So they’re really experiencing all the frontline issues that come with addiction and issues related to the fentanyl overdoses.”
Pogas says since then, the provincial government has adopted part of a 10-year road map they developed on how to deal with local housing issues.
He says they’re starting to see more commitment to build more housing.
The speakers list at the Housing Central Conference includes the Municipal Affairs Minister, Vancouver’s Mayor, a New York Times bestselling author on the failed war on drugs, and an Olympic athlete and Aboriginal advocate.