Hundreds of residents stood outside of Ottawa City Hall on a chilly morning, in support of a motion by Somerset City Councillor Catherine McKenney to declare an affordable housing and homelessness emergency in the city.
“This only happens in numbers like this for something that we care deeply about,” said McKenney on Wednesday morning.
The councillor said the rally was being held in honour of the 716 children living in motels, the 1,100 women and men who slept in a shelter and the 92 residents who slept outside Tuesday night.
Rally-goer Rosemary told 1310 NEWS this problem isn’t confined to the City of Ottawa.
“We have a Canada-wide housing crisis. We have an epidemic of social isolation and loneliness that is killing people. We have an opioid crisis. Those things are costing cities and provinces tons of money.”
The city of Ottawa has pledged $15-million for affordable housing over the past two years.
If a state of emergency is declared, Ottawa will be able to reach out to the federal and provincial governments for additional resources.