June 11, 2018 6:44 am
Updated: June 11, 2018 12:13 pm

Feds loosen funding restrictions as part of revamp of national homelessness strategy

WATCH ABOVE: Social Development Minister Jean-Yves Duclos announces Canada's strategy to reduce homelessness by "at least 50% over the next 10 years."


Cities working to get homelessness Canadians off the streets and into homes will be given more money and fewer spending restrictions under a revamp of the Liberal government’s centrepiece homelessness program.

READ MORE: Liberals’ national housing strategy still vague on helping homeless veterans

The Liberals took a long look at the program after hearing complaints from cities about cumbersome reporting requirements, inadequate funding and unrealistic expectations about how quickly the money should be spent.

Under new rules being unveiled today, cities will be given leeway to spend money on local initiatives and experiments – so long as they can meet Ottawa’s goal of cutting in half the number of chronic homeless people in their midst.

VIDEO: Temporary shelters to be built to address homelessness in Toronto

New cities will become eligible for funding, expanding the spending that has already targeted 61 cities and towns across the country.

The 2017 federal budget doubled the amount of money the government plans to spend on the program, bringing total spending to $2.1 billion over the next decade.

READ MORE: Liberals poised to make housing a right in new homelessness strategy

The government says some of the new spending will target Indigenous Peoples – a group over-represented in shelters compared to their percentage of the general population – and communities in the territories.

© 2018 The Canadian Press

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