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Housing Financial Assistance for Low-Income Households

QUÉBEC CITY, Québec, April 27, 2005 — The Honourable Joe Fontana, Federal Minister of Labour and Housing, and Nathalie Normandeau, Quebec Minister of Municipal Affairs and the Regions, announced today that funds are being allocated, over a period of three years, under the current Rent Supplement program. This measure, covering the period starting January 1, 2005, will provide housing financial assistance to 1,000 low-income households in Quebec.

"The Government of Canada is pleased to work with Quebec to meet urgent housing needs," said Minister Fontana. "Rent supplements will help those most in need, including seniors, low-income families and persons with disabilities. This initiative clearly shows our commitment to ensure that affordable housing solutions are made available to Quebec residents, particularly those who live in major urban centres and must move, but whose limited financial means are preventing them from finding adequate housing."

"Quebec intends to apply the federal contribution to rent supplements mainly as emergency measures in the context of the rental housing shortage," specified Minister Normandeau. "These funds will therefore support the efforts of the Government of Quebec, which has been giving priority in recent years to helping households in difficulty on account of the affordable housing shortage."

Rent supplements allow low-income households to live in private, cooperative or non-profit rental housing units that are available on the market. To be eligible under the program, the dwellings must meet minimum health standards.

Other joint measures

The federal and provincial governments also implemented Phases I and II of the Canada-Quebec Affordable Housing Agreement, which provides for investments of $473 million, 90% of which has already been committed, for the production of over 8,000 affordable housing units.

For more information, please contact:

Julie Cohen
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
(514) 283-3679

Peter Graham
Office of Minister Fontana
(819) 953-4646

Jonathan Trudeau
Press Assistant to Minister Normandeau
(418) 691-2050
(514) 873-2622