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Housing affordability a major focus of BT Vancouver Q&A with Burnaby-South by-election candidates

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The conundrum of how to address the housing crisis dominated a live Q&A on Breakfast Television on Citytv, ahead of Monday’s federal by-election in Burnaby-South.

The issue of housing affordability is a complicated one, but the three candidates representing parties with official status in the House of Commons have different approaches on how to tackle it.

Liberal candidate Richard T. Lee is pushing an expansion of co-ops. “I would also like to see more housing for the homeless. This is a national strategy that would [see] a 50 per cent decrease in homelessness in Canada.”

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Meanwhile, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh wants the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to bring back the 30-year mortgage.

“Folks that qualify but can’t make those monthly payments, [it will] give them some relief. We talked about ensuring that there are measures in place for co-housing, as a creative solution.”

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Conservative Jay Shin, for his part, says it isn’t all about new money. Instead, he says it’s also about finding more efficent ways to spend it.

He says “demovictions” are a real problem. He says he would work with Burnaby’s city government on zoning to provide better supply.

“I’m happy to work with the new mayor … He’s got ideas on how to change the zoning process — make it more available — and consider different ideas to make more housing available.”

Supporters of Laura-Lynn Thompson, who is running under the People’s Party of Canada banner, protested her exclusion from the event.