News Release Archive

Nova Scotia's housing needs are changing. 

An aging population and aging housing stock means we have to 
re-think the way we provide social housing in this province
Housing and Municipal Affairs Minister Guy Brown said today when
he released the draft document, Housing for Tomorrow: New
Directions for Social Housing, today. 

"We want to achieve the greatest benefits with the resources
available," the minister said. "A strategy must be developed to
meet the more pressing housing needs, particularly for low-income
families, the frail elderly, people moving out of institutional
care, and people with disabilities."

In 1996 a committee of people from the departments of Housing and
Municipal Affairs, Health, Community Services and Finance was
given the mandate to review the current programs and develop a
provincial housing strategy for the next five to ten years. The
committee looked at population trends, housing activity in the
province, and housing programs and services in other provinces.
In addition, the committee held four regional meetings for local

Mr. Brown said the review was necessary for a number of reasons.
He said the province's population is aging, the number of people
over the age of 75 will increase by 37 per cent over the next 10
years, older people have different housing needs. 

The report said housing in Nova Scotia is among the oldest in the
country. Almost 30 per cent of the housing was built more than 50
years ago. Older houses require regular maintenance and repairs
to remain in good condition.

Things are also changing at the federal level which will impact
on a provincial housing strategy. In 1996 the federal government
announced its intention to make major changes in its social
housing role. The federal government proposed to transfer the
responsibility for the administration of federal social housing
programs to the provinces. Federal-provincial discussions on the
proposal are underway in Nova Scotia.

The report will now serve as a point of discussion to refine a
provincial strategy. Although some consultation has already taken
place, stakeholders and the public are invited to comment on the
proposed recommendations up until October 15, 1997.

The document also identifies a number of areas where substantive
interdepartmental work needs to be done. A final report will be
released late fall 1997.


Contact: Laurel Russell 

         Michelle Whelan 

NOTE TO EDITORS: Highlights of the report and/or a copy of the
report is available at Communications Nova Scotia, 1700 Granville
St., or by calling 902-424-4492.

ngr                    August 11, 1997 - 3:15 pm