In 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic persisted, people in Canada continued to rely heavily on the sanctuary of their homes. Yet far too many families still struggled to find suitable housing they could afford, and thousands of households were displaced by serious climate events.
At CMHC, our commitment remains just as strong. We aim to ensure that people in core housing need have equitable and reliable access to secure, affordable housing; that Canada has the number of homes and the mix of housing options to serve diverse needs; and that our housing system supports sustainability and stability. But to better meet these goals, we have prioritized seven areas where we, as Canada’s federal housing agency, can make the biggest difference starting in 2022 (see the Look Ahead section).
As a trusted partner, we will continue to collaborate meaningfully with other sectors, and all orders of government, to deliver for Canadians. For example:
- We exceeded our targets on all National Housing Strategy (NHS) programs— more than $19 billion was committed by the end of the year, helping to build and repair more than 174,500 units. We also launched the second round of the NHS’s newest program, the Rapid Housing Initiative, to create urgently needed housing for those in precarious housing due to the ongoing impacts of COVID-19.
- Our strong ties with financial institutions led to billions of dollars in commitments of new funding to finance affordable housing projects over the next decade.
- We gained new ways to better meet the housing needs of people in core housing need. The National Housing Council, the Indigenous Advisory Council, and community engagement with equity-seeking groups are amplifying the voices of people with lived experience of housing need and homelessness and helping to shape a housing system that is more inclusive and equitable.
However, there is still much work to be done. Canada’s housing problems are complex and call for a whole-of society approach. Governments of all orders, non-profit, private and academic sectors all need to collaborate to make a difference. Working together, we can help everyone through the pandemic to an inclusive recovery, ensure the stability of our housing finance system, advance our country’s commitments to anti-racism, equity, reconciliation, and mitigating and adapting to climate change.
We are taking great strides to be a convener, bringing partners together to tackle these huge challenges. We have a proven, 75-year history of responding to Canada’s housing needs. We have a dedicated staff of more than 2,000 experts from across the country.
Last year, we were recognized with four major workplace awards. Our employee resource groups are engaged and generous with their insights and lived experience. And I want to thank all our employees for their renewed dedication, particularly through what was an extremely challenging year. We are building a culture based on the values of courage, community and impact.
I hope that this report will inspire you to join us in our aspiration. After all, housing affordability for all is bigger than one organization’s ambition. It’s the key to our country’s future economic strength and social cohesion. Together we can create a better future for everyone in Canada.
President and Chief Executive Officer