Housing justice is the fair and just distribution of housing benefits in society. Access to affordable, safe and adequate housing is key to an individual’s inclusion in the full rights and benefits of citizenship.
The Housing Justice Project approaches the housing affordability issues from three distinct but synergistic perspectives:
- Civil society engagement and education
- Policy development
- Social change litigation
In the first and second approaches to housing justice, we fostered civil society engagement by informing Vancouverites about housing issues and hosting forums on critical affordable housing priorities. We developed policy initiatives in conjunction with various community partners, and worked with them to leverage policy change at all levels of government. Our policy reports can be found under Our Research.
The third approach involves building support and providing academic expertise for a legal challenge to move Canadian law to recognize a right to adequate housing, in keeping with Canada’s international human rights obligations. We hope to make legal action one part of a broader social change strategy, from which more public engagement can be leveraged to encourage stronger responses to housing issues.
The outcome of the project is a greater awareness of effective models for the provision of affordable housing. Informed community members can be effective advocates for furthering proposed changes. More specifically, the following three benchmarks are relevant:
- Policy change
- Education and outreach
- Community advocacy