Capacity to meet basic needs depends on an adequate income. Federal and provincial governments have greater powers to influence income and poverty rates than do municipal governments. But municipalities do have some important economic, employment and other policy and program levers.
High housing costs and low rental vacancy rates make it hard for people to transition out of homelessness, or to move from inadequate housing. Research shows that providing the support needed to prevent homelessness and to keep people housed is actually cost effective to society as a whole.
Beyond being an obvious physical necessity, food is intertwined with our family and social lives, with culture, and with the local economy. In spite of Ottawa's well-stocked grocery stores, getting enough nutritious food remains a challenge for many people.
Efficient and economical public transit is a key element of a livable, future-oriented and equitable city. Affordable and efficient ways of getting around can mean the difference between getting and holding a job, getting through school, making medical appointments, accessing appropriate food, and participating in programs and activities.