Canada invests more than $1 million to create more build Indigenous shelters

A combined investment of up to $103 million to build at least 178 new shelter and transitional units in communities across the country was announced on May 8.


Honourable Ahmed Hussen, minister of housing and diversity and inclusion, Honourable Patty Hajdu, minister of Indigenous services, Honourable Marc Miller, minister of crown-Indigenous relations, and Jaime Battiste, member of parliament for Sydney-Victoria made the announcement in collaboration with Indigenous partners.


“This funding will help address the urgent need for new shelters and transitional housing for First Nations, Inuit and Métis across the country who are experiencing family and gender-based violence. The shelters and transitional homes will be located on reserve, in the North, and in urban areas, and will offer survivors a stable environment when they need it most. These projects will be Indigenous-led and will offer access to support programming to help survivors of family and gender-based violence access culturally appropriate services to recover from the trauma of their experiences,” says a May press release.


The funding breakdown includes:


– $81 million from CMHC for the construction of 178 new shelter/transitional units.

– $15 million from ISC for ongoing operational support of the 178 new shelter and transitional units.

– $7.8 million from ISC will be available to support start-up costs for operations.


Based on consultations with Indigenous organizations and subject matter experts, committees were formed to develop processes for evaluating applications and selecting projects. These committees include representatives from First Nations organizations, Inuit organizations, Métis organizations, Indigenous 2SLGBTQI+, Indigenous urban communities, persons with lived experience of shelter and/or transitional housing needs, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and Indigenous Services Canada.


“No relationship is more important to Canada than the one with Indigenous peoples. These new Indigenous shelters and transitional units across the country are a crucial step in addressing the urgent need for safe and culturally appropriate housing for Indigenous women, children, and 2SLGBTQI+ people fleeing family and gender-based violence,” said Hussen. “By investing in culturally appropriate affordable housing for Indigenous Peoples, we are working hard to improve the quality of life for those who need it most. This is the National Housing Strategy at work.”


The funding is part of the $724.1 million budget for a comprehensive Violence Prevention Strategy, as announced in the 2020 Fall Economic Statement.

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