MP Jenny Kwan on Affordable Housing & Co-op Checkins

//MP Jenny Kwan on Affordable Housing & Co-op Checkins

MP Jenny Kwan on Affordable Housing & Co-op Checkins

On this episode, we’re pleased host a discussion with our honourable Member of Parliament for East Vancouver, Jenny Kwan, along with regular guest Thom Armstrong, to discuss the challenges facing housing co-operatives in these extraordinary times. 

For more years than I can count, we’ve been following the challenges facing housing co-operatives on Each For All. One significant challenge for housing co-ops has been the expiration of federal financial subsidies for supporting lower income households. These subsidies were tied to housing co-ops initial mortgages, negotiated with the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation some 40 years ago. As these mortgages are getting paid off, these long standing subsidies are expiring. This is leaving housing co-ops in the lurch…they no longer have subsidies to support their lower income members and they are sitting on aging infrastructure that needs repair. This is putting their communities in jeopardy and jeopardizing a large number of already available affordable homes across Canada. 

Unfortunately, with housing strategy moving from the federal jurisdiction to provincial jurisdiction in the mid-80s, the responsibility for who should continue to support these subsidies for this affordable housing has be in dispute between Ottawa and the provinces. Both have come to the table to support some of the housing co-ops that are facing the loss of subsidies, however co-ops are already falling through the cracks. This month more co-ops will loose their subsidies and are facing some difficult decisions. 

MP Jenny Kwan has been a vocal supporter of affordable housing and housing co-operatives since we was first elected to parliament in 2015. Joining us in conversation is Thom Armstrong, the Executive Director of the Co-operative Housing Federation of BC. We seek to provide a better understanding of the challenges facing Canada’s co-op housing sector and how we can maintain and strengthen our communities. 

In the second half of our show, we return with our regular monthly checkins with John Kay, Thom Armstrong and Ross Gentleman. 

This year has been an exceptional one. Which feels like a massive understatement. For co-operatives it has been a wild ride as well. Listen to the update from our co-operative sector check in panel of co-operators; 

  • John Kay, President of the board for Co-ops and Mutuals of Canada, Vice-Chair of the British Columbia Co-operative Association and CEO, Realize Strategies 

  • Thom Armstrong, CEO, Co-op Housing Federation of BC

  • Ross Gentleman, Former GM of CCEC and a blogger on credit union matters at 

Topics include: 

  • An update on the sale of MEC 
  • Economic recovery
  • Federal continuation of tax deferred taxable shares
  • Construction financing
  • New cabinet in BC
  • Director’s Forum w CCUA
  • and more…

Thank you for listening! If you would like to get in contact with us here at Each For All, please email us at or tweet us @eachforall on Twitter. 

By |2020-12-07T20:55:57-08:00December 1st, 2020|Show|0 Comments

About the Author:

Host and executive producer Robin Puga has been with Each For All from its beginning in 2006. Robin studied at the British Columbia Institute of Co-operative Studies (BCICS) and is active in the co-op community. In addition to working in the technology sector he’s a founding member of the CanTrust worker co-op and previous board member of the BC Co-op Association.

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