OPENING THE RIGHT DOOR. NOVEMBER 21 ST , 2013. A TEN-YEAR PLAN TO ADDRESS HOUSING & HOMELESSNESS ISSUES IN HASTINGS COUNTY . Presentation Outline. Hastings County—who we are and what we do Purpose of the Plan? How did we develop the Plan? Key Findings Recommendations
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NOVEMBER 21ST, 2013
Hastings County—who we are and what we do
Purpose of the Plan?
How did we develop the Plan?
Monitoring the Plan
Separated Cities: 2
Population: 138,600 which includes the Cities of Belleville and Quinte West
The focus of our work at Hastings County is:
Supporting People and
To work together with our community partners to attain the ultimate goal of securing, maintaining and supporting the housing needs of people in our community. The Plan focuses on:
The “Housing First” approach is based on the concept that a homeless individual or household's first and primary need is to obtain stable housing; other issues that may affect the household can and should be addressed once housing is obtained.
We had to keep in mind that, to date:
no new funding has been announced that is associated with the Plan.
IT’S LARGER THAN THE NUMBER OF
APPLICANTS ON THE SOCIAL HOUSING
Characteristics of our Population, Demographics and Housing Stock (most stats based on 2006 Statistics Canada Census)
Social Housing Waitlist
Consumer Usage of Housing & Homelessness Programs and Services, including, for example, services for victims of domestic violence, people with addictions and people with mental health concerns.
Historical Context of Social Housing
Housing Related Assisted Living Programs
Best Practices/Community Partnerships
Information Sessions and Consultations were held with:
A questionnaire was distributed by email, and the web-based program “Survey Monkey” was used as part of the community consultation process.
Unaffordable homes/lack of rental stock
Not In My Backyard (NIMBY)
High heat and hydro costs
Budgeting programs and access to them
Increased home repairs and lack of funding for them
Additional supports for people with mental health concerns
Increased home repairs and lack of funding for them
More supports for an aging population on fixed incomes
Need for a shelter
Need for more transitional and supportive housing including staffing supports (i.e. for tenants with mental health and addiction issues, victims of domestic violence)
Need for more single non-senior housing
Need for budgeting and life skills for lower functioning adults
Greater focus on social determinants of health (housing, income, education/training, and social and physical environment)
Need for more transitional and supportive housing including staffing supports (i.e. tenants with mental health and addiction issues, victims of domestic violence)
Need to provide longer term supports to enable clients to live independently
Need for more single-non senior housing
Need to educate the community/public awareness of the issues of homelessness
More supports for the aging population on fixed incomes
Wait list/Wait times
Arrears, rent collection
Damages to the units
Aging population (mobility issues, modifications, health issues)
Social Problems/Issues with neighbours
Planning is in the process of updating the official plan which will reflect the requirements of the Provincial Policy Statement.
The update will include policies that (for example):
Create a partnership between the South East LHIN and Housing Services to pilot a ‘supportive services’ program in Non-Profit Housing Providers’ and Hastings Local Housing Corporation-owned properties for tenants who suffer from mental health and/or addictions issues.
Good Neighbour/Home Visitor Program staff will continue to work with tenants of the Housing Services, (which includes rent supplement properties, Non-Profit and Co-operative Housing Providers) to assist them in appropriately maintaining their housing.
The Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative Program funding (CHPI) has been used to create a local Housing and Homelessness Fund (HHF) in Hastings County. It is recommended that the fund will support the ‘Housing First’ approach adopted in this Plan.
In partnership with local service providers, create an ‘eviction prevention protocol’ that encourages agreement by all agencies (i.e. Community Advocacy and Legal Centre, Canadian Mental Health Association and the Good Neighbour/Home Visitor Program) that work with housing and homelessness related programs and services so that tenants never feel they are going to ‘the wrong door’.
Be ‘shovel ready’ with new project proposals.
Support local Non-Profit Housing Providers who wish to build new units.
Proceed as directed by the Hastings/Quinte Social Services Committee and Council (February, 2013), to prepare a comprehensive implementation plan for the potential sale of some, or all of the single, detached houses in Belleville and Trenton.
Housing Services will explore a potential partnership with Habitat for Humanity.
The County of Hastings will advocate to senior levels of government for funding commitments related to the development of new affordable housing options.
That the Planning and Development Department create policies that, subject to proper approvals, allow for:
As directed by the Hastings/Quinte Social Services Committee in February, 2013 :
Staff are to commence discussions with each Non-Profit Corporation, at least three years before the retirement of their mortgage, in order to determine the most cost-effective approach to maintaining the number of units available for social housing purposes.
Staff are to prepare, at the appropriate time, a report on the results of those discussions for consideration by the Joint Social Services Committee outlining any arrangements for continuing to participate with the non-profit corporation or any alternatives that may be beneficial in meeting the needs for affordable housing.
The County of Hastings will advocate to senior levels of government for funding commitments related to residential rehabilitation programs, such as CMHC’s former RRAP programs, to address the need to assist low to moderate income home owners in maintaining their homes as it relates to energy efficiency, health and safety, water conservation and accessibility. Research indicates that the age and condition of some housing across the municipality requires such programs. In addition, Hastings County’s Housing Services Belleville office has received over 900 telephone inquiries about programs for emergency repair, retro-fitting for accessibility and heating upgrades.
Investigate the development of incentive programs to assist landlords willing to rent their units at affordable rates. These incentives could include funding to retrofit these units for accessibility, energy efficiency, health and safety and other green initiatives.
In coordination with the development of an eviction prevention protocol, local service providers will be approached about working toward improving service, universal access, and consistency of program and service delivery.
The new process will be regularly monitored to ensure expected outcomes.
Improve public awareness about the ‘face of homelessness’ across Hastings County, including the Cities of Belleville and Quinte West by taking advantage of available free resources with local media providers and on-line.
Advocate with local partner agencies to encourage in-kind support from local corporations, landlords and the like to obtain their support for the creation of a shelter.
Create and promote programs and services that reduce the carbon footprint of public and non-profit housing.
Hastings County staff will continue to properly maintain, to the highest standards possible, all social housing properties across the County. In addition, staff will, in partnership with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, deliver programs such as the Social Housing Renovation and Retrofit Program (SHRRP) to ensure that funding dollars are maximized for capital expenditures that not only extend the life of social housing properties, but also incorporate conservation and efficiency measures to reduce operating costs and the carbon footprint.
Provide educational opportunities regarding the aforementioned programs to tenants of public, non-profit and private sector housing as well as landlords and private proponents of new and existing affordable housing development.
Staff are developing a variety of mechanisms to monitor the success of The Plan. These may include ‘Quality of Life Indicators’, surveys, data collection, and other tools to ensure The Plan is working as intended.