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Minister says more people living in tents, normal for summer

By Caitlin Snow Jul 13, 2023 | 4:42 PM

David J. Boozer / Unsplash

Homelessness continues to be a big issue here in Halifax, with more people that seem to be living in tents as the cost of living keeps getting higher.

Minister Karla MacFarlane tells reporters there will naturally be more tents in parks in the summer with the weather being warmer. She says the province is doing the best they can with the situation, including creating new shelters and increasing the Child Tax Benefit.

“When we look at the investments we made in the DoubleTree, which is now The Bridge, the Overlook… these are new modern, creative projects that we are implementing,” said MacFarlane.

MacFarlane said everyone is living ‘paycheck to paycheck’ and that it’s a very challenging time with inflation.

She says there are resources to help meet the needs of people and if someone’s needs are not met, to get in touch with their case worker.

NDP Housing spokesperson Suzy Hansen responded with the following statement:

“What the Minister said yesterday is unacceptable, hurtful, and flat-out wrong. There is nothing ‘natural’ about the growing state of homelessness in HRM and across the province. For the minister in charge of this file to say what she said and not understand the lived experience of those sleeping outside with no other options is shocking and embarrassing. We are in a housing crisis. And we have seen this crisis get worse in the two years that this government has been in charge. Seniors, young people, and everyone in between are worried about finding and keeping a home they can afford. If the Houston government agrees with what the Minister said about Nova Scotians who are finding it hard to get by then we have a serious problem. If not, then maybe she should be out of a job.”

There are now roughly 940 people without permanent homes in the city.



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