FREDERICTON (GNB) – The following statement was issued today by Social Development Minister Bruce Fitch to recognize Nov. 22 as National Housing Day:

All individuals in New Brunswick deserve access to an affordable and safe home within an inclusive community.

Nov. 22 is the occasion to reflect upon housing issues that are affecting individuals and families in our province. It is also the occasion to recognize the multiple efforts deployed in every region to address these issues.

The provincial government recognizes the importance of partnering and strengthening relationships with community partners in efforts to increase and diversify the housing sector and housing options available.

The development of affordable housing units is a priority for the Department of Social Development. We work with several partners to help New Brunswickers as they transition through the housing continuum – from emergency shelters to more independent housing arrangements, to market rent or home ownership.

These partnerships have grown into important development such as the new housing project of the John Howard Society in Fredericton and the Rising Tide Project in Moncton. These and other projects show that providing housing is more than providing a roof. It is about providing an opportunity for individuals and families to take their lives into their hands and fulfil their full capacity.

The Department of Social Development continues to offer housing assistance to all applicants who demonstrate need.

A home is more than a roof. It can be the path to a new life.