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

Giddy Up – annual Mustang car show comes to Langley

The Mustang has been on the market for 55 years, and owners gather to celebrate the iconic Ford.

Son of slain former Hells Angel is one of two men sentenced for crime spree

Pair’s 2017 series of Lower Mainland robberies stretched from Surrey to Mission

Debussy, Chopin, Bartok, and a selection of Celtic favourites

‘Music for a summer afternoon’ features live harp and flute performances at Trinity Western House

Vancouver Giants Scouts sticking with team for another season

Contracts extended for Head Scout Terry Bonner and Scouting Director Daryl Anning

Disney Plus to launch in Canada in November

Analysts say latest streaming service may escalate cord cutting

B.C. Speaker tight-lipped about legislature security tour

B.C. Liberals question Alan Mullen’s drive across Canada, U.S.

Politicians say elections law restricting partisan ads is ‘absurd,’ ‘lunacy’

Election Canada’s choice to cite climate change as a specific example has left environment groups feeling muzzled

B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

Larger operating areas seen as threat by cab companies

Conservative Leader Scheer won’t ‘lift finger’ to bring ‘Jihadi Jack’ to Canada

About 190 people with connections to Canada are suspected of terrorist activity abroad

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

Okanagan bus driver assaulted for asking patron not to smoke

59-year-old in hospital with non-life threatening injuries

Most Read