Research & Reports

New research reveals the racial, social, and geographic divides of Toronto’s housing crisis

Spaces and Places of Exclusion: Mapping Rental Housing Disparities for Toronto’s Racialized and Immigrant Communities is a first-of-its-kind study, mapping spatial exclusion by racialized and immigrant status in Toronto’s wards. Disaggregated race-based and other social data from the 2016 Census of Population are used to examine key indicators of rental housing inequality, including core housing need, lack of affordable housing, unsuitable or overcrowded housing, and housing in need of major repair.

Presented through over 50 new maps and figures, our analysis reveals

  • the ways in which racialized individuals, specific racialized population groups, newcomers, and refugees are disproportionately affected by the housing crisis in Toronto;
  • identifies the intersecting social, racial, and spatial dimensions of Toronto’s housing crisis; and
  • confirms Toronto’s position as a major site of Canada’s housing crisis and highlights the precarious housing circumstances of many renters.

More than 1,400 Torontonians Tell City Council What They Want to See in Our City’s Pandemic Recovery

More than 1,400 Torontonians whose voices are not usually heard at City Hall took part in consultations to tell the City what they need as we recover and rebuild from the COVID-19 pandemic. Their opinions and ideas are shared in our new report, Community Voices Pave the Road to Recovery.

The City of Toronto partnered with us to design and deliver a city-wide consultation process—led by residents, grassroots groups, and community organizations—to engage residents from Indigenous populations, equity-seeking groups, vulnerable populations, and neighbourhoods with disproportionately high rates of COVID-19 cases. 

Senior Poverty & Inequity: The Toronto Experience

The COVID-19 pandemic has focused public attention on the health, well-being, and increased vulnerability of seniors, but too many of Toronto’s seniors were already struggling before the pandemic due to income and housing challenges.

Senior Poverty & Inequity: The Toronto Experience, co-authored by Social Planning Toronto and Well Living House, draws on data from the 2016 Census and the Indigenous-led Our Health Counts Toronto research study to paint a disturbing picture of senior poverty in our city, particularly among Indigenous, racialized, and immigrant seniors. The report’s authors call on all three levels of government to take urgent action against senior poverty.

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Report Examines Which of Toronto’s Problems are Better, and Which are Bigger, after 10 Years of Austerity

Welcome to 2020! As we look ahead to a new decade and the launch of the City of Toronto’s 2020 budget, we decided to take stock of Toronto at the end of the ‘10s, so that we may learn from the past and chart a new path forward. 

Our Toronto After a Decade of Austerity: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly report looks at how our city has progressed, declined, or stagnated over the past decade in three key areas:

  1. housing,
  2. child care, and
  3. public transit, cycling, and walking.

We assess the current state of the city after a decade of austerity budgets using 20 quantitative indicators and offer resolutions to build a better city. Three immediate options are to:

New Research on the U.S. Housing Choice Voucher Program Offers Lessons for Canada

Friday, November 22, 2019 – Today, on National Housing Day, Social Planning Toronto releases its new report, “Learning from Our Neighbours to the South: The U.S. Housing Choice Voucher Program - Evidence and Lessons for Canada.” 

This in-depth review of the Housing Choice Voucher Program provides a base of evidence to guide the development of the Canada Housing Benefit, a key component of Canada’s National Housing Strategy. The report offers lessons from the U.S. experience, identifies principles and practices that best support positive outcomes for tenants, and articulates the limitations of portable housing benefits for addressing housing needs. 

A City Left Behind: Poverty Reduction, Election Promises, and the 2019 Budget

In the lead up to the 2018 City of Toronto municipal election, Social Planning Toronto, Commitment TO Community, and Faith in the City asked candidates for Mayor and City Council to sign the “Prosperity Pledge”, an election promise to follow through on actions to advance the City’s Poverty Reduction Strategy during the 2018-2022 term of Council. The Pledge included specific, measurable commitments to be met by 2022, with a focus on housing and homelessness, public transit, child care, and recreation.

A total of 73% of the members of the new Council, including Mayor Tory, signed the Pledge. The 2019 City budget offers the first opportunity for Toronto City Council to begin to make good on its election promises to act on poverty.

How to Hub: Community Hub Development Toolkit

The “How to Hub: Community Hub Development Toolkit” is a practical guide to support residents, parents and community allies in advocating for a community hub in their neighbourhood. This toolkit offers introductory information on a range of topics relevant to groups that are in the initial stages of developing a community hub or who would like more information before beginning their journey.

2018 Toronto Child & Family Poverty Report: Municipal Election Edition

The 2018 Toronto Child & Family Poverty Report draws on newly released census data to reveal a disturbing picture of child and family poverty in Toronto and in every single ward across the city.[1] With Toronto residents set to go to the polls on October 22, the report authors call on all candidates for Toronto City Council to commit to bold action in response to the pervasive hardships experienced by families in our city.

Talking Access & Equity

The city of Toronto is home to a large and diverse population speaking more than 200 different languages. According to the 2016 census, over 130,000 individuals living in Toronto are unable to have a conversation in English or French. Toronto residents without official-language skills make up 4.9% of the city’s population.

Talking Access & Equity: A Profile of City of Toronto Residents Who Speak Neither Official Language delves into the demographics of this population, considers policy and program implications and makes recommendations to support the social, cultural and economic inclusion of these residents. It is the third report in Social Planning Toronto’s census research series.

Climate Solutions that Work: Bringing Community Benefits and Climate Action Together

In partnership with Social Planning Toronto and the CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals, the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA) has just released a new report that identifies best practices for leveraging investments in climate actions to create a range of community benefits.

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