Toronto Community Housing responds to Special Housing Working Group report
Read the report on the City of Toronto website.
September 17, 2012
Councillor, Ward 18 (Davenport)
Chair, Affordable Housing Committee
Dear Councillor Bailão,
On behalf of the employees and residents of Toronto Community Housing, I thank you and the other Special Housing Working Group members for your leadership and hard work over the past six months.
Every resident of Toronto Community Housing deserves to live in clean, safe, well-maintained homes. Yet delivering this standard of housing to our residents will remain an elusive goal for our employees as long as the company lacks the funds it needs to maintain all our buildings in good repair. And without new money, soon many more buildings will fall into disrepair and become unsafe to live in. Action is clearly needed, which is why Toronto Community Housing welcomes the working group's report.
Our board of directors, leadership team, managers and staff fully recognize that Toronto Community Housing must put residents first, improve its financial practices and be more accountable for results. Several changes designed to strengthen the company along these lines have recently been approved by the board. But one example is the repair blitz program we will launch this fall, which will use $11.5 million in proceeds from asset sales in 2011 and 2012 currently in our State of Good Repair Fund to benefit up to 16,000 households in 80 buildings across the city over the next two years. New leadership, open communications, and new practices that better connect the company with the communities we serve have created a strong platform for change.
With the report's release, now the focus turns to City Council. To that end, I look forward to working with you to engage councillors on how Toronto Community Housing can work more closely with the City and other partners to pursue as many new approaches and opportunities as we can to generate the money we need to fix our housing and close the gap on our $751-million capital backlog. I will also encourage our residents to voice their support and share their views with their local councillor.
To restore credibility, Toronto Community Housing must think and work differently. The working group's report will guide us as we chart a new direction that will enable us to deliver social housing in Toronto better than it has ever been done before. All of us at Toronto Community Housing welcome your continuing support and we look forward to working with the City to achieve our shared goal of providing safe, clean affordable housing in good repair to the people of Toronto who need it most.
[original signed by]
Eugene E. Jones, Jr.
President and CEO
Toronto Community Housing
cc: Mayor and Council
N.W. (Bud) Purves