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On The Price Tag of Displacement, Affordable Sleeping Pods, and the Construction Catch-22

Tea & Two Slices is a long-running local news round-up by NEEDS frontman and veteran dishwasher Sean Orr, who lives and works in Gastown, deeply aware of his privilege.

Oh hey, look, another city doing literally anything to protect renters: City of Prince Rupert cracks down on renovictions as B.C. cities grapple with affordability
Social Sharing
. This is great, but rampant financialization means that owners with small portfolios will just sell their stock to REITs, private equity firms, pension funds and other vehicles of predatory equity. We also need to include a clause that gives cities the first right of refusal on the sale of housing stock. And, while we’re at it, why not tie it into Land Back and give First Nations the right to refuse as well?

Add to this, the right of tenants to organize: A Landlord ‘Underestimated’ His Tenants. Now They Could Own the Building. Can you imagine the implications of this if we were to legislate tenants’ rights?

Require landlords to recognize tenant associations in their buildings, attend meetings on request at least four times a year, and bargain with tenant unions in good faith: A New Effort in San Francisco Aims to Debate Rent at the Bargaining Table.

Because make no mistake, they are already putting a price tag on displacement :

Coming to a tech hub near you: Bay Area housing startup offers sleeping pods for $800 a month.

As enticing as it sounds, we can’t build our way out of this. Especially if the builders can’t even live in the homes they are building: Greater Victoria builders say they can’t find workers to build new homes, because they can’t find homes for the workers. Tell me Marx was right without telling me Marx was right.

Because there is no evidence that more homes means lower prices: Why Ottawa’s plan to ramp up construction might not bring down soaring home prices.

If housing is an investment, they will do everything in their power not to lose on that investment. And that means passing the buck: Some new landlords are losing money. With rates rising, tenants could see rent hikes.

The other side of the supply issue is the question of single family zoning. Maybe there’s a way around that: How the Vancouver Special, once described as bland, holds a key to solving B.C.’s housing crisis. Of course, without land value capture mechanisms like community land trusts or non-profit housing corporations, this is just more fuel on the fire.

Speaking of which: Can Burnaby just… fund its own housing?: “Hemingway said he’s in favour of ending exclusionary low-density zoning altogether, but while it remains, giving certain groups—governments and non-profits—the ability to build up on single-family lots would offer savings on land acquisition costs”.

Which brings us to a question so simple it tumbles the whole house of cards: Why aren’t land titles free?.

While you’re worried about losing on your investment, people are literally dying: Woman with disabilities nears medically assisted death after futile bid for affordable housing.

Anti-choice organizations and centers in Vancouver – heads up that they exist from vancouver

There is 1 comment

  1. The thing with the lack of workers is that government doesn’t care. That’s what we have the indentured servant/modern day slavery for. Sorry, temporary foreign workers. We’ll continue to import impoverished people who are willing to work for wages which they can barely keep their heads above water (and call ourselves progressive because, look at us white folks giving those poor coloured people jobs!) which in turn will allow the business owners to continue to make large profits and keep the cogs moving.

    If we were truly progressive, these workers wouldn’t be temporary, they’d be provided a term visa, with the option to renew/stay if they chose and met reasonable requirements and they wouldn’t be tied to any employer.

On Ken Sim’s So-Called “Swagger” and ABC’S Class War

Sean Orr is back from his hiatus with a rundown of the local headlines that have been running on a ticker tape through his mind over the past six months...

On Post-Election Recuperation, Platform Paradoxes and Refund Communities

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr finds irony in "safety, affordability, and sustainability", and shouts out a bunch of amazing local organizations working on the frontlines.

On Running for City Council, Playing Whack-a-Mole with Homelessness, and the Public Washroom Deficit

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr finds a park ranger with a grudge, a gross misuse of air quotes and Tripadvisor slander.

On Living in a City Preoccupied with Street Cleaning, Chandeliers, and Campaigns Against the Homeless

In his latest read of the local news headlines, Sean Orr hones in on the recent Langley shootings, and the ongoing criminalizing and dehumanizing of the homeless population.