QUEEN’S PARK –During question period today, Windsor West MPP and NDP Homelessness critic Lisa Gretzky demanded that the Liberal government answer to the $200 million in funding that was denied to Windsor’s homelessness support services this year.
“There was no excuse to deny Windsor a portion of this funding,” said Gretzky. “I recently visited our Downtown Mission, Victoria Manor, and the Welcome Centre for Women and Families in Windsor. It’s clear that they, along with other community organizations, are stretched thin and in desperate need of resources.”
Recent figures released from Statistics Canada indicate that among all cities in Canada, Windsor has the highest rate of children growing up in low-income households. Almost one in four children now fall within this statistic. In addition, Windsor’s median income has dropped 6.4 per cent in the last ten years. More and more families are now turning to community support services, but without financial support from the government, these services cannot keep up with demand. Skyrocketing hydro costs and cuts to health care make life even more difficult for these families.
“We recently found out that one in 10 shelters in Ontario closed between 2011 and 2016 because of funding cuts,” said Gretzky. “Municipalities like Windsor have fewer and fewer resources for homelessness prevention, even though the number of people whose primary residence is a shelter has increased by 10 per cent”
“When will this government get its priorities straight and support Windsor families in need? asked Gretzky.