Yukon NDP asks gov't to adopt 'housing first' model

The NDP is asking the Yukon government to invest in social housing for homeless people.

Minister responsible says Yukon Party has increased social housing by 40 per cent

The Yukon Anti-Poverty coalition reports more demand for emergency shelters and food banks in Whitehorse. Participants are here shown during a recent outreach day for homeless people at the Old Fire Hall. (CBC)

As winter begins in Yukon the NDP is asking the government to invest in social housing for homeless people.

MLA Kate White is calling on the government to adopt a 'housing first' model, which would include what's known as wet shelters for chronic alcoholics who would otherwise be difficult to house.

MLA Kate White is calling on the government to adopt a 'housing first' model.

"'Housing first is about knowing that people need a home, and that any other issue that a person is living with can be more effectively addressed once a person has housing," White said. "Does the minister believe in a housing first approach for those Yukoners who need either shelter, transitional housing or supportive housing?"

The minister responsible for the Yukon Housing Corporation, Brad Cathers told the house that the Yukon Party has increased social housing by 40 per cent.

The minister responsible, Brad Cathers, told the house that the Yukon Party has increased social housing by 40 per cent.

"Quite frankly I'm offended, as I know are my colleagues, by the NDP's attempt to portray us as lacking in compassion, when in fact our track record demonstrates that we have put more investments into social housing than the NDP," Cathers said.

"The NDP preach a good line but they didn't put their money where their mouth was." 

Cathers said social assistance rates increased under the previous two Yukon party governments.

A recent report by the Yukon Anti-Poverty Coalition shows increased demand for homeless shelters in Yukon as well as food banks. 

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