I work with individuals and families in the Cowichan Valley who are extremely impacted by the lack of affordable and safe housing.
When I read about the parking concerns regarding the proposed affordable housing project on Sherman Road, I’ll be honest, I started vibrating. I have clients debating which type of infestation they can better tolerate; bed bugs or cockroaches? Living with intermittent heat and bathrooms that don’t work properly. Active drug dealers living and working in buildings right next door to young families.
Clients who won’t take landlords to tenancy court because they are terrified of being evicted and ending up homeless. I worked for years in Edmonton’s inner city and nothing I saw there rivals some of the rentals I have seen here. Nothing.
I am very aware that there are fantastic landlords in the Valley, unfortunately our current rental housing crisis creates opportunities for slumlords to take advantage of people desperate for a roof over their head.
I am extremely encouraged by the comments by councillor Kate Marsh, the mayor, and others who have conveyed their support for this project, and more importantly, the absolute necessity of affordable housing.
There is a crisis here, no other way to describe it, and I am hopeful that any concerns about parking, or anything else that may arrive, can be resolved expeditiously.