Mr. Speaker, last week was the second annual homelessness week in Greater Vancouver. Vancouverites overwhelmingly identified homelessness as their number one social challenge as do many other Canadian cities.
The last Liberal government had committed $1.4 billion to a partnership with municipalities, provinces, non-profit and private sectors to provide shelters, single occupancy units, and temporary living for those Canadians who have no shelter. We had developed a cities plan with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
These were all swept away by the new Conservative government. Its 2004 platform along with the 2006 and 2007 budgets never mentioned homelessness nor housing. Instead, it cut the Liberal homelessness fund, restoring it much later as the rebranded homelessness national strategy with greatly decreased funding.
Now the Speech from the Throne mentions the word “homelessness” in passing: no plan, no funds. Are we to believe that after three years the government has developed a social conscience or is it just more of that smoke and mirrors trick that it does so well?