March 22, 2024

(xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C.) The First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) is deeply concerned by the recent findings published by the Auditor General of Canada regarding housing in First Nations Communities released on March 19. It confirms that since their first report in 2003, little progress has been made in supporting First Nations to improve housing conditions in our communities.

During the period reviewed between 2015 to 2021, there has been no meaningful improvement in First Nations housing conditions. Long standing mould issues have gone unaddressed, communities with the poorest housing conditions have not received commensurate funding and little progress has been made in transferring the control of housing to First Nations. The report found that Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) continue to utilize outdated funding formulas based on 2001 census data without reflecting over twenty years of demographic changes or the evolving needs of our communities.

In 2019, the Government of Canada committed to working with First Nations to close the housing and infrastructure gap by 2030. ISC has funded numerous reports and studies focused on First Nations’ housing needs. In 2021, the Assembly of First Nations estimated that First Nations communities needed a total of $44 billion to close the housing gap by 2030. Due to increasing construction costs, inflation and other factors, this figure has since tripled to $135 billion as of 2023.