Ontario Increasing Support for Homelessness Prevention in Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston

Province’s additional investment will help people at risk or experiencing homelessness

April 11, 2023

Lanark County — The Ontario government is investing an additional $202 million annually in the province’s Homelessness Prevention Program and Indigenous Supporting Housing Program, bringing Ontario’s total yearly investment in these programs to close to $700 million. The additional funding will help those experiencing or at risk of homelessness and support community organizations delivering supportive housing.

This includes just under $2.5 million for the County of Lanark.

“Ontario’s 2023 Budget is supporting those that have fallen on hard times in Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston and are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing homelessness,” said MPP John Jordan, LFK. “This government will continue to take action in homelessness prevention and provide more people with not only a place to call home, but hope for a better future. We will continue to assist our exceptional local organizations that lend a helping hand to the most vulnerable, under the Homelessness Prevention Program.”

The additional funding, announced in the 2023 Budget, represents a 40 per cent increase in funding by the government to support the most vulnerable by providing supportive housing and homelessness prevention services. Under the $202 million, $190.5 million each year will be allocated to the Homelessness Prevention Program (HPP), which gives Ontario’s 47 Service Managers greater flexibility to allocate funding and make better use of existing resources to focus on delivering supports.

Emily Hollington, Director of Social Services, Lanark County said, “We are pleased to see the ministry’s increased financial commitment to the Homelessness Prevention Program. Lanark County will receive a total of $2,496,000 in 2023-24, which includes an additional investment of nearly one million dollars. The additional HPP funding will help the County address the complex needs of people experiencing homelessness and will enhance our initiatives in preventing homelessness.”

The remaining $11.5 million each year will be invested in the Indigenous Supportive Housing Program (ISHP), which provides Indigenous-led, culturally appropriate long-term housing solutions and support services to Indigenous people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

Lanark County Warden, Peter McLaren said, “The additional HPP funding will help Lanark County address the complex needs of people experiencing homelessness. County Council will be reviewing several staff recommendations for this funding including growing the supportive housing stock, funding community support workers to provide homelessness response and scattered site housing support services, increasing entitlements under the County’s Housing Assistance Program, rental assistance for people transitioning out of homelessness, and public education. We’re hopeful the increased funding will make a positive impact on some of the most vulnerable people in our community”.

“We know Ontario’s housing supply crisis impacts all Ontarians, no matter their background or budget,” said Steve Clark, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “That’s why we’ve increased funding for our homelessness prevention programs by more than 40 per cent. These measures complement the bold and transformational change we are implementing to tackle the housing supply crisis and get more homes built faster across Ontario.”

The increased funding is a result of a revised funding model that better reflects the current needs of individuals who are facing homelessness across Ontario. Funding dollars are being increased to address increased needs, particularly during a time of rising inflation, and to help ensure that no service manager receives a decrease in funding compared to 2022-23 as a result of the transition to the new model.

Perth Mayor Judy Brown said, As Chair of Community Services for the County, I am thrilled to hear of the Province’s announcement of a 66 percent increase in funding for the Homelessness Prevention Program. This will help address an area of great concern and be of much help to the disadvantaged in our community.”

“During a time of economic challenges and change, our government is supporting those who have fallen on hard times and are experiencing, or are at risk of experiencing, homelessness,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, Minister of Finance. “Ontario’s 2023 Budget: Building a Strong Ontario is the right plan to support those who need it the most today while laying a strong fiscal foundation for future generations.”

The Homelessness Prevention Plan went to Committee of the Whole last week, and will be going for council approval on April 19.

MPP John Jordan LFK