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December 19, 2006
City welcomes extension of federal homelessness programs
The City of Toronto welcomes the extension of two federally-funded housing and homelessness programs but is looking forward to permanent solutions, Mayor David Miller said today.

“This is good news for Toronto,” said Mayor Miller. “We were concerned about the future of these important programs. I’m pleased to see they will continue for at least two years enabling us to have a positive impact on homelessness and housing issues. I am committed to working with the federal government on a longer and more sustained effort to solve homelessness.”

“I want to thank the federal government for responding positively to unanimous and urgent requests from municipal, provincial and federal politicians, community agencies, the private sector, and advocates,” said Councillor Joe Mihevc, Chair of the Community Development and Recreation Committee. “We look forward to more details very soon.”

Ottawa has announced the renewal of the Supporting Communities Partnership Initiative, now renamed the Homelessness Partnering Strategy, for two years. Since 2000, the program has provided some $125 million in Toronto for the creation of transitional housing and shelter beds and for building improvements to drop-ins, shelters, food banks and Out-of-the-Cold programs, as well as funding for employment skills and the Streets to Homes initiative.

The federal government has also extended the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (RRAP) that has helped about 750 Toronto homeowners and tenants at an annual cost of $7 million to make house repairs, accommodations for disabled residents, and other improvements.

“I am pleased that some 1,500 homeowners and tenants in Toronto will now benefit from the renewal of the RRAP initiative,” said Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti, Chair of the Affordable Housing Committee.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of more than 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and innovation in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

Media contacts:
Councillor Joe Mihevc
Chair, Community Development and Recreation Committee
(cell) 416-315-9849

Phil Brown
General Manager, Shelter Support and Housing Administration



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