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B.C. Urban Mayors' Caucus renew calls for implementation of complex needs housing solutions

One of the four main priorities from the Urban Mayors' Caucus is housing for individuals with complex needs and urging immediate action

The B.C. Urban Mayors' Caucus is once again urging the province for complex care housing solutions to help the most vulnerable within their communities.

Housing for individuals with complex needs has been one of the four main priorities outlined by the caucus since it was implemented just prior to the 2020 provincial election campaign.

Since that time, the mayors' caucus has held several conversations with a number of provincial ministries responsible for health, housing and justice advocating for "appropriate housing and supports for people with complex needs to be operational in a matter of months, not years."

"Residents with complex needs have overlapping mental health, substance use, trauma and acquired brain injuries, and they are often left out on our streets to experience homelessness," says Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran, co-chair of the caucus.

The most vulnerable in our communities are falling through the cracks, he says.

“Municipalities have invested in supportive housing, funded more police and bylaw officers and created policies to increase inclusion in our communities and yet more needs to be done and for that we need the province’s support.”

The Urban Mayors' Caucus, representing 13 of the province's largest communities, are urging immediate action be taken by the province to alleviate the strain of leaving those with complex needs on the streets.

"Those with complex needs should have access to the supports they need. Providing appropriate housing with appropriate support at the right time is a game changer both for the individual and for our broader communities," says Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps.