Election 2021

Using addictions funding to build supportive housing

Yesterday, the Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce hosted an all-candidate forum. Given recent restrictions implemented by the Alberta government, the chamber chose to have no public audience and livestreamed the video, which you can view below.

As part of their livestream, they allowed viewers to submit questions, which then the moderator would share with the candidates.

One viewer directed the following question to me.

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Should money be taken from what is currently allocated to addicts/mental health to supportive housing for low income working individuals?

The moderator never presented the question to me, so I thought I’d provide my answer here.

No, I do not think that the government should reallocate funds from addictions programming or mental health programming to supportive housing.

Addictions programming and mental health programming are vastly underfunded already. Reducing that funding will only exacerbate the problems that are a result of chronically underfunding these areas.

We should definitely better fund supportive housing, but not by sacrificing critical programmes.

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By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent queer journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news articles, focusing on politics and labour.

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