(File Photo)

Victoria’s Community Social Planning Council (CSPC) announced its concerns about the new housing act announced by the province on Monday. 

Despite the CSPC’s excitement over the new initiative to help curb the housing crisis, they are concerned about the fact that affordability was not mentioned by Premier David Eby to be a part of the act’s plans.

In September 2022, the CSPC released a housing equity report that takes into account information on housing affordability starting in 2016 and looking ahead to 2026. 

The report clearly shows that there is a serious need for housing options for those who have low incomes.

“This legislation will move the needle on the housing crisis if the housing targets specify not just how much, but also who needs housing, what kind, and at what cost,” said Nicole Chaland, author of the equity report. 

“If the targets do not specify this, aiming at them will be like shooting in the dark.” 

The CSPC’s equity report shows that there is a deficit of nearly 3,500 homes that should cost $375 per month and 14,200 homes that should cost $875 monthly. 

These equitable homes in Greater Victoria will help those at risk of homelessness avoid sleeping rough on the streets. 

“We have seen that supply alone is not going to resolve the housing crisis,” says Diana Gibson, Executive Director of the Community Council.

“Housing costs were a key factor in the living wage jumping 20% this year–affordability needs to be a strong focus in any targets that are set by the government.”


The report the CSPC put together was made in collaboration with the Housing Assessment Resource Tools (HART) project that is based out of Vancouver’s University of British Columbia. 

Hart is working to advance the development of standardized ways to measure and address housing needs in order to balance the supply of housing. 

“Provincial-municipal targets will need to be linked to robust, equity-focused, data,” said Craig Jones, HART Coordinator. 

“Our tool measures housing needs by income group with intersectionality that allows us to look at housing needs for priority populations such as single parents.”

The following data compiled by the CSPC and HART shows that within Victoria, Esquimalt and Saanich specifically, the need for low income housing is the need that they’d like Premier Eby to focus on:

(Community Social Planning Council)
(Community Social Planning Council)
(City of Victoria via Community Social Planning Council)
(Township of Esquimalt via Community Social Planning Council)
(District of Saanich via Community Social Planning Council)

According to the CSPC, affordability in adequate housing is the need that must be addressed. 

“The size of these numbers should be a wake-up call,” said Chaland in the CSPC’s equity report. 

“The enormity of the challenge is more important than the precise number of homes required and should motivate local municipalities, BC Housing, and the governments of BC and Canada to work together to transform the housing system.”

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