Nunatsiaq News
NEWS: Nunavik June 22, 2018 - 8:30 am

Nunavik to get 134 new social housing units in 2019

But housing survey shows region needs 800 new units to accommodate growing population

SARAH ROGERS
Nunavik will get 134 new social housing units across the region in 2019, mostly one- and two-bedroom units, spread out across seven different communities. (FILE PHOTO)
Nunavik will get 134 new social housing units across the region in 2019, mostly one- and two-bedroom units, spread out across seven different communities. (FILE PHOTO)

Nunavik will get 134 new social housing units across the region in 2019, spread out across seven different communities.

Housing allocations were announced during the Kativik Regional Government council meetings held in Aupaluk last month.

The units, funded by both the provincial and federal governments, are distributed based on a regular housing needs survey prepared by the Kativik Municipal Housing Bureau, which identified the seven communities with Nunavik’s largest housing deficits.

Inukjuak will receive the largest number of new units, 24; Salluit will get 22; Kangiqsualujjuaq, Kuujjuaraapik and Quaqtaq will each receive 20 units; Akulivik is to receive 16 and Kangirsuk will get 12 new homes next year.

Most of the housing comes in the form of one- or two-bedroom units, though a smaller number of those units are three- and four-bedroom buildings.

The new homes will only make a small dent in the region’s housing shortage, however. The KHMB’s latest survey indicated the region needs 813 additional units to accommodate its growing population.

That’s down slightly from the region’s last survey in 2015, which pegged the housing shortage at 1,030 units.

The 2017 survey also found that certain homes were overcrowded, while others have empty bedrooms. For that reason, the housing bureau has been looking at relocating certain households to more appropriately sized units.

The same survey also found that more tenants are living alone; 492 individuals live on their own in Nunavik, suggesting the region could use more one-bedroom units, which made up about half of the new housing announced for 2019.

Nunavik’s tripartite agreement with Quebec and Ottawa typically provides social housing to the region over a three- to five-year period.

But ongoing negotiations have forced the regional government to settle for one-year agreements over the short-term while the different levels of government worked to negotiate longer-term funding for housing in the region.

The groups finally reached an agreement for a new, five-year funding agreement last month, which will see Ottawa pay out $25 million a year from now until 2022, while the Quebec govenrment will cover operating costs.

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