Sudbury’s plan to end homelessness by 2030 requires provincial, federal funding

The roadmap to ending homelessness by 2030 adopted unanimously by city council on Tuesday describes the different initiatives that need to be put in place for the Greater Sudbury to reach its goals. It involves shifting the approach from one that offers passive services like warming centres to more active solutions like increased options for transitional housing. 

The idea is to limit services that “manage the homeless problem rather than end it,” reads the report from city staff. The roadmap proposes solutions to prevent people from experiencing homelessness. These include things like emergency rent programs and legal aid clinics to help tenants hold on to their housing. Another pillar of the strategy involves working to ensure people’s experience of homelessness is brief. That means having rapid rehousing programs in place where housing supports would be offered overnight in emergency shelters. An increase in supportive housing will also be needed to keep vulnerable people housed, said the city’s director of children and social services Tyler Campbell. 

“Our acuity percentage is higher than other comparable municipalities,” he said, meaning that clinical and social services are needed to prevent people from slipping back into homelessness.  Some around the council table asked if people experiencing homelessness in Sudbury were from the city or elsewhere, the nickel city being an important hub in northeastern Ontario.  The city’s manager of housing services, Gail Spencer, said about 75 per cent of people on the by-name list have been established in Sudbury for more than five years.

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