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Speech at Official Opening of Sandgate Women’s Shelter (York Region)

It’s a pleasure to be here on behalf of my colleague, the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada — and the Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.


Today, we celebrate the acquisition of a property here in Richmond Hill that will soon house the services of Sandgate Women’s Shelter.  This shelter is the first crisis bed space for women and children in southern York region.  It will provide 10 safe beds and more emergency housing and support services to women and children at risk of abuse and homelessness in our community.


I’m proud to say that the Government of Canada has contributed over $600,000 through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s SEED Funding and Shelter Enhancement Program.


This program assists in repairing, rehabilitating and improving existing shelters for women and children, youth or men who are victims of family violence.  It also provides financial assistance for the acquisition or construction of new shelters and second-stage housing where needed.


Our Government understands the importance of investing in our most vulnerable Canadians.  Last fall, we committed $1.9 billion over five years to improve and build new affordable housing, and to help the homeless.


Building on this, Canada’s Economic Action Plan provides a one-time investment of a further $2 billion over two years to build new social housing, repair and energy retrofit existing social housing. This funding will help to build more places like the Sandgate Women’s Shelter, and help to provide a supportive environment for women and their children to call home.


Today’s event marks an important step forward for the people of York Region and demonstrates what we can achieve when we work together. When it comes to building safe and strong communities, it takes the efforts of many to achieve success. It takes partnerships at all levels of government to get real results.


With the help and dedication of the community and Sandgate Women’s Shelter we are making a big difference for people of York Region


I would like to thank the Sandgate Women’s Shelter for their involvement in this project. Since 1992, you have provided countless women with the support they needed to end the abuse in their lives. You are helping to provide a stable and safe place to live in a community environment, and for that I am extremely grateful.


I wish you all the best in the future.