Dear Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Housing,
The recent news of two Canadians seeking to die with medical assistance after being unable to find affordable housing within a month should put you to shame. It is a testament to the monumental failure of your government’s housing and labor policies, which has seen relentlessly rising rents and house prices hit the average Canadian worker while wages fall. .
Since the Liberal government came to power in 2015 promising to fix the housing crisis, house prices have almost doubled. Soaring house prices caused by the financialization of housing have allowed real speculators like your own MP Taleeb Noormohamed to extract obscene wealth, while many Canadians have to give up food to earn rent.
Meanwhile, real wages are falling while wages are only rising at half the rate of inflation. To make matters worse, you just eased restrictions on the temporary foreign worker program even as vacancies have fallen precipitously since peaking in September 2021.
Your government is scamming immigrants like me into settling in Canada by selling a false dream of a better life. The reality is that you just want me in Canada as tax cattle that big business can exploit to drive down wages. By increasing immigration levels without increasing housing supply, you are also exploiting immigrants like me to further inflate the housing bubble and make landlords like the one who make a third of your cabinet even wealthier.
Most renters will reach retirement age without housing or savings due to the high cost of living. Once we are too old to work and our Canada Pension Plan payments are not enough to cover the rent, we become disposable in the economy you have created. The only alternative to life on the streets that you offer us seems to be euthanasia.
You have failed as a government when the nurse who cares for the sick or the teacher who educates the young has to pay half his paycheck to a parasitic real estate investor who does nothing for society. You failed as a government when essential workers are one homeless eviction away because you prioritized the wealth of Taleeb Noormohamed and their ilk over meeting a basic human need.
You have a moral obligation to prevent more Canadians from dying because of your failed economic policies. I urge you to take the following steps immediately:
- Prohibit investors from buying real estate
- Ban Airbnb and other short-term rentals
- Fund massive construction of affordable housing
- Ending the Temporary Foreign Worker Program
- Align immigration levels with the unemployment rate and housing availability to end the cruel practice of newcomers to Canada being exploited to cut wages and raise rents
If you can’t or won’t govern in a way that ensures the welfare of your citizens, you don’t deserve to be the government. If you’re not going to take immediate action to end the housing crisis and end the race to the bottom for workers, the most honorable thing you can do is quit.
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