Archive for November, 2011

Housing is a Right, Not a Commodity!

November 12, 2011

On Saturday November 12th we will get back in the streets. Banking and housing deeply effect us in Canada, but this is nowhere more true than in Vancouver. Every day, renters are evicted and existing housing is demolished in order to keep prices high for the real-estate industry and the Big Five banks that finance them.

As we saw with subprime mortgages in the United States, housing finance targets poor, low-income and working people who can no longer subsidize the housing bubble. As the Bank of Canada states, Vancouver is “ground zero” of the housing bubble[1], while inequality is etched onto the landscape of the city. Day after day, gentrification in Vancouver is like another subprime mortgage crisis, but instead of targeting individuals it targets entire neighborhoods: areas with the largest stock of desperately-needed affordable housing are being callously bought up because they yield the highest margins of profit for developers.

Development and banking are the only monopoly industries in Canada that yield a 25% profit rate. In order to understand how the 1% reproduces themselves in Vancouver, we will march to key Downtown sites of Vancouver’s housing/finance complex. Locations will include: sites where social housing was promised but never built, headquarters of Vancouver’s largest developers and marketers, and historical and architectural sites important to the housing movement in Vancouver. On Saturday we will continue the class struggle for housing. RUN ON THE DEVELOPERS!

[1] Jeremy Torobin and David Ebner, “Carney warns on housing markets,” Globe and Mail, June 15, 2011


Why Do We Need Another Housing Rally?

•We live on unceded Coast Salish Territory, where a disproportionate rate First Nations are homeless on their own land
•A condo boom that won’t stop spreading
•City-wide displacement of the poor
•Loss of vital community and social space
•City sold off on a global market
•Rising cost of living, declining wages and benefits
•Closing of much needed shelters
•Rising rents, homelessness, and joblessness
•Tax breaks for gentrifiers, no breaks for the poor
•Record developer contributions to city politicians
•2000: Brutality and co-optation at Woodwards
•2009: Destroyed family housing at Little Mountain
•2010: Broken housing promises at the Olympic Village
•2011: Condos pushed through in the DTES/Chinatown

Join Us! For a history and tour of Vancouver’s housing struggle, by grassroots groups offering solutions and building community in a system in crisis!


Endorsed by Occupy Vancouver, Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood Council, Power of Women, and the Purple Thistle.

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