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Minutes of Meeting
Thursday, July 23, 2009, 7:00 p.m.
Multipurpose Room, Windmill Line Co-op, Toronto

PRESENT: Donald Altman (Church-Isabella), Barbara Czarnecki (Windmill Line;

recording), Corrie Galloway (Windward), Pat Leslie (Hugh Garner), Sylvia Novac
(Fred Dowling), Beth Wilson (Toronto Women’s)

REGRETS: Murtaza Dogo (Eamon Park), Tracy Geddes (Red Hill), Lauren Hele
(Newmarket), Christine Mounsteven (Charles Hastings), Patrick Newman
(Cardiff), Jerry Reitsma (Ann Marie Hill), Brynne Teall (Oak Street), Sharyn
Wallace (Innisfree)

1. Introductions

2. Adopt agenda
Agreed. Proposed for a future agenda: the impact of the HST on Ontario co-ops.

3. Minutes of July 3, 2008


4. Updates
— CHF Canada lobbying on continuing RGI after end of agreements:
Barbara reported on a call from Nick Sidor. CHF Canada plans to focus on a
small group of Ontario MPs, maybe six or eight, with large numbers of S95 and
ILM units in their ridings (Bob Rae, others not yet chosen). They want to turn this
group into “champions” for the cause of creating a successor subsidy program.
CHF would write letters to each one in late August, asking for meetings in Ottawa
or locally. The letters would specify how many units of RGI housing are at risk in
each co-op in the MP’s riding, with copies to those co-ops. Nick suggests that the
co-ops could then do their own follow-up.

Members present were generally in favour of the plan. Some skepticism was
expressed over how much Rae would actually do. AACH could collect personal,
human-interest stories of the effect of RGI cuts. AACH has done this in the past.

— Social Planning Toronto (SPT) research project:

This project would document trends in subsidized units in co-ops, and the
potential for co-ops to provide more RGI housing. Beth will pick up the project in
the fall; the methodology is not yet developed.

Beth can work on “co-op stories” as part of this project and can add a seniors
component, by projecting income levels into the future. She noted that there are
complaints of discrimination about co-ops that she must include in the project.
AACH Minutes, July 23, 2009

— counting vacancies in Toronto co-ops:

AACH started a count last year after George Smitherman, then the minister of
health, asked us for numbers of co-op vacancies. CHFT took over the count but
we never heard the results. Barbara will call Tom Clement. Beth said SPT could
do a vacancy count.

— AACH national meeting:
About 16 people attended. The lunch-hour format seems too short, as people
have a lot to say. Donald will look into whether the next meeting could be turned
into a workshop, in the regular conference schedule.

— survey on impact of recession:

The survey report has been sent to Patrick Newman, Ontario Region Director, for
distribution to the CHF Canada board.

— workshops:
Barbara gave highlights of the government relations workshop. CHF Canada
sees no prospect of movement on restoring RGI funding lost in past cuts, but
extending RGI after the end of agreements remains a high priority.

6. Current projects
— the House Project:
The House is finished and making appearances. It was at two forums held in
advance of the Ontario consultations on affordable housing strategy, in
Scarborough and in downtown Toronto. For this project, AACH will continue to
work with partners other than CHF Canada and CHF OR, since these sector
organizations have made clear that they do not support actions that could attract
unfavourable media coverage of governments.

The Ontario consultations continue in September. Barbara will try again to raise
interest in London. (At Victoria, a member of the 2010 AGM planning committee
was interested in bringing the House to London.) A Hamilton AACH member
offered via email to look into pre-consultation events there. Corrie will contact
Janine McDonald to ask about events in Lindsay. Beth will try Social Planning
contacts in Sudbury and Thunder Bay.

— AACH submission to Ontario consultations

The AACH submission could build on previous presentations to Housing
Opportunities Toronto and the UN Special Rapporteur. Beth will help in the fall.
We should review a draft by mid-October.
A question about vacancies in Scarborough federal co-ops was asked at
the provincial consultation in Scarborough, but the assistant deputy minister,
Kathleen Blinkhorn, said that wasn’t a provincial matter. The province could
choose to see vacancies as an opportunity rather than somebody else’s

AACH Minutes, July 23, 2009

“problem” — a point we could make in our submission.

— Housing Network of Ontario declaration:

Barbara will send AACH’s endorsement to HNO at

— 2020 Vision:
Is there a way to connect to it? Affordability comes up in the Compass exercise
as a highly rated value. Is CHF tracking how often, and how strongly? These
numbers could be used in lobbying for continued affordability.

7. AACH business
— The July 17 financial statement shows a balance of $1,908.92, largely from
donations for the House Project. The group agreed that reimbursements for that
project could be made on the signature of both co-chairs, without a motion at an
AACH meeting.

— Website:
Christopher Wulff at SPT has offered to set up a simple site via SPT if we provide
content. Beth will link him to Barbara to get this done.

8. Not to be forgotten
— treating internal subsidy as charitable contribution: this idea still comes up
from time to time.
— contacting non-housing co-operatives
— media strategy
— connecting with other housing advocacy organizations: the House Project is a
significant advance toward this objective. Linda Coltman of Voices from the
Street has offered to try to get the House to an ONPHA meeting.
Phil Brown, general manager of shelter, support and housing for Toronto,
attended the CHF AGM and the national AACH meeting in Victoria. Donald noted
that the city recognizes what will happen when S95 co-ops and other S95 non-
profits end their agreements: demand will increase on city housing.
A Recession Relief Coalition has formed and may be holding events.
Older Women’s Network is having a forum in October.

9. Next meeting date

Wednesday, September 16, 7:00 p.m., Windmill Line.