Our View: Quality housing is key

Affordable housing needs to be more than simply cheap

The fact that we’re in a housing crisis in B.C. is obvious to everyone.

But just because someone has found a place to live doesn’t mean their troubles are over.

A dispute between tenants of a Langley housing complex and its managers is one of many that take place wherever low-income housing is found. It doesn’t matter whether that housing is subsidized by the government and run by a non-profit, or run privately by a for-profit landlord, the issues from the tenant’s point of view are the same.

Everyone deserves housing, but more than that, everyone deserves housing that is fit for human habitation.

There have been numerous stories from around the Lower Mainland, including Langley, about tenants dealing with mould, mildew, broken plumbing, torn carpets, holes in walls and doors, rickety stairs and more.

In some cases, doubtless the blame, or some of it, falls at the feet of the tenant. In others, it is simply a lack of will or money on the part of the landlord.

The worst case scenario for B.C. remains the grinding misery of those who live in single-room occupancy hotels in parts of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, preyed upon by slumlords who let the buildings rot around their tenants, until the structures are condemned or taken over by the government.

In fact, the slow decay of marginal housing is a part of the homelessness and housing crisis.

When there are buildings falling apart and visibly decaying, it’s easy to say that they should simply be swept away.

But even if the new buildings are brighter, cleaner, better run, where do the residents go during the long rebuilding period?

–M.C.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Thanksgiving Day crash in Langley sent a few to hospital

No one believed seriously injured in head-on accident at 232nd Street and Fraser Highway

ON COOKING: Embrace the experience, from beginning to end

A passion for cooking can easily be rekindled according to this chef and culinary instructor

Langley pioneers remember heritage buildings

Ahead of November’s Douglas Day banquet, Fred Pepin speaks to importance of preserving local history

Turkeys avoid dinner plate at Thanksgiving meal in Aldergrove

Happy Herd Farm Sanctuary planned a vegan potluck dinner Sunday

Soroptimists of the Langleys host women’s health forum

Topics covered include medical assistance in dying, accessing medical cannabis, and a healthy brain

B.C.’s rural paramedic program expands, with home support

Advanced care ambulance staff added for six communities

BC Ferries sees steady traffic of post-Thanksgiving weekend travellers

Ferries filling up fast, sailing waits at some terminals

‘Save the kids!’ Dorian survivor tells the harrowing story of his Canadian wife’s death

Family held a funeral and placed Alishia Liolli’s remains in a niche at a cemetery in Windsor, Ont.

Okanagan woman, 91, votes at advance polls despite broken hip, shoulder and wrist

Angela Maynard has voted in almost every election during her lifetime

Heiltsuk Nation open first Big House in 120 years in northern B.C.

Opening means the community now has an appropriate space for spiritual and ceremonial events

Singh says NDP would form coalition with the Liberals to stop Tories

Singh was in a Liberal-held riding Sunday afternoon in Surrey where he was pressed about his post-election intentions

BC Ferries filling up fast with post-Thanksgiving weekend travellers

Monday anticipated to be busiest day of the weekend

The one with the ‘Friends’ photoshoot: Kelowna group recreates TV show intro

A friend’s departure prompted them to create something that really says, “I’ll be there for you”

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Most Read