Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker, housing is essential infrastructure in our communities to house our families, our friends and, more importantly, to sustain our communities. But, Mr. Speaker, from the latest report from the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation, statistics on core needs shows that there is definitely a problem with the number of core units that are in core need, especially in my riding where 43 percent of the houses in Aklavik are in core need, 33 percent in Fort McPherson and 41 percent in Tsiigehtchic.
Mr. Speaker, this government provides programs and services to assist residents with housing programs to maintain, insure, upgrade their units, repair their homes to ensure that they are not in core need. Mr. Speaker, what this report shows compared to the last report, which was tabled in 2004, is that, if anything, the core needs have increased rather than decreased.
Mr. Speaker, with the aging infrastructure in our communities, especially in people’s homes, they do have to attract more attention by way of houses in core need. But, Mr. Speaker, programs and services that we have, have to be user friendly. They are not to be bringing barriers where people aren’t able to acquire these programs and make it so restrictive that people aren’t able to be eligible
for a lot of these programs especially in small communities. Mr. Speaker, I think it’s essential that we, as government, revamp our programs to make them more user friendly and also make them available to all residents of the Northwest Territories and especially the homeowners that we depend on to stay in the North.
Mr. Speaker, we talk about people and the purpose of having an influx of migration so that people can live in the North, but we can’t forget the people that call the North their home, and one of the biggest investments they make in our communities is their household. I think, Mr. Speaker, it’s important that this government does everything it can to keep these people in our home communities, keep them in their homes, ensure that they have adequate programs and services. So, Mr. Speaker, at the appropriate time I will be asking the Minister of Housing exactly why is the report showing that we have such a high number of core need. Thank you, Mr. Speaker.