Plante promises to double the budget to help the homeless and at risk

The incumbent mayor’s campaign promise includes 300 new housing units annually for four years to help the homeless.

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Calling on the Quebec government to replace partial measures with long-term solutions for the homeless, Projet Montréal mayoral candidate Valérie Plante vowed on Monday to double Montreal’s budget to help people on the street. .


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A second Plante administration would spend $ 6 million a year, a total of $ 24 million over the next four years, to help the homeless, mostly in the form of funds for community organizations, he said at Parc du Portugal on Plateau Mont- Royal.

A “humanitarian crisis” is unfolding in the Milton-Parc neighborhood, where “dozens of people live in a situation of great human distress in extremely difficult conditions,” Plante said.

She pledged her support for a 24/7 culturally adapted shelter for indigenous peoples.

In January, Raphael André, a 51-year-old Innu man, was found dead inside a portable toilet near Milton St. and Parc Ave. after public health officials trying to quell a COVID-19 outbreak in the community of Homeless people ordered the door open. Shelter on Parc Ave. to close for the night.


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Plante called on Quebec to join the city in developing a comprehensive five-year plan to address homelessness, noting that organizations that work with people on the street have trouble retaining staff long-term due to constant uncertainty about whether its financing will be renewed.

“Having a roof over your head is a fundamental right,” he said.

Plante also promised 300 new housing units per year, 1,200 over the next four years, for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

During Plante’s first term in office, he said his administration exceeded its promise to create 950 new homeless housing units, developing 1,089 units.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated homelessness, increasing distress among already vulnerable people, he said. He called for more provincial funding for mental health services for people affected by deinstitutionalization: the discharge of patients with chronic mental health problems in the community.


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He also said that homelessness should not be managed seasonally, with one set of resources available during the winter and another in the summer, but should provide year-round stability in the services offered.

Homelessness is a social problem that requires the commitment of the provincial government, which will release its economic update later this fall, Plante said. “You have the key,” he said.

Ensemble Montréal critic Benoit Langevin accused Projet Montréal of “waking up in the middle of an election campaign to promise measures for the homeless that should have been in place for the past four years.”

Despite the increase in homelessness during the pandemic, “the Plante administration decided not to increase funds dedicated to homelessness in the latest budget,” he said.

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