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LETTER: Langley losing affordable housing units

Housing should be a basic right, letter writer says
A letter writer is concerned about the ability of residents to afford housing as more and more rental units are demolished to make way for higher cost units. (Langley Advance Times files)

Dear Editor,

The issue of housing is enormous, but it is linked with many other aspects of cause and effect on individuals, and this has to be brought out into the open.

BC Housing is dysfunctional. It has no ability to deal with the problem of not having enough affordable housing because every year after every year they state there are three or four or five years on a waiting list to obtain a unit.

What does that tell us?

There is another overwhelming issue of immigration that I believe is causing part of the problem of not having sufficient housing availability. I am not against immigration, but the infrastructure has to be there to support it, and we don’t have it on the housing level or on many other levels within the communities.

I also believe it is one more driving factor that is pushing up the costs for rental units and homes because of supply and demand, and the lack of legislation to control the rising cost of rental units and homes. I may be wrong, but that is how I see it.

If one keeps pushing the demand and need for housing and rental units the prices rise, and with no control there will be more homeless people who can’t afford the rising costs. That means it will hit all ages.

Immigration is a factor of life that is needed in Canada, but the necessity should not overwhelm the basic and fundamental right of being housed now, not just us, but for them also. A home is where the heart grows and where the visions of this country should be headed is our infrastructure should be established to take on the demand that immigration brings.

The solution has to be where all levels of governments have to get on the bandwagon and start building, contributing, solving the problem, or it’s going become an epidemic, an epidemic of not just having homeless people, but also having an enclave of people with emotional and mental health issues.

Housing evictions, demolishing buildings to build higher rental units at more costs to low-income people and seniors, and young adults who are trying to establish themselves in this life is not a solution. Displacing people from their homes and from the community where they live because of high costs of rentals homes is very destructive on a social plane and overwhelmingly negative in cohesiveness with family structure and individual mental stability, especially with the seniors of our communities.

The mayors and council members across Canada with the provincial premiers and members of cabinet, and the government of Canada, I would hope they would understand this when there is an eviction or demolition of a building, you are destroying the very segments of people’s personal lives that contributed to the well-being of this individual as well as the contribution these individuals gave to their communities and to the connections they have with their families.

“Move” is more than just one word. It has emotional factors attached to it and some of them can erode the sense of worth and stability in one’s life.

There are many aspects to having affordable housing or lack of it, and having to move, because the rent cannot be covered by the income you receive, and then there is the shortage of not thinking it out carefully how it affects the individual and society if the system doesn’t address this problem, because it just doesn’t disappear.

Housing is a dramatic life giving subject matter. It is easy to rip down a building and displace people, but it takes a lifetime to build a home in a community and plan the structure of one’s life where you know your worth as a human being is not just to oneself, but to your family, your neighbours and to all new immigrants who seek peace in our country.

We must be a community that recognizes we are all in the same globe of humanity, living our lives and hoping for the best. The best is what surrounds our homes and what lives within them and our societal structure that is built.

Our home houses many emotions they are built with thought and with love.

Housing is a right, and it has to be a right or we, as Canadians, are left homeless and without direction to a humane society.

Cran Campbell, Langley City


• READ MORE: Province announces HousingHub program in 2018 to partner with groups

• READ MORE: Affordable housing a top priority in 2022 municipal election


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