New Report Calls for Action to Address Rural Housing Crisis

For Immediate Release
Mar. 13, 2023 

The housing crisis in Newfoundland and Labrador is not just limited to cities. People in rural areas are also experiencing significant housing-related challenges.  

A new study from Choices for Youth (CFY) and Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador (MNL) looked at 11 communities across the province to better understand rural housing needs.  

The study found that, in eight of the communities, one-third of renters were living in unaffordable housing and that, since 2019, there has been a ten-fold increase in emergency shelter use in areas beyond the Avalon Peninsula.  

Furthermore, this report emphasized the connection between housing insecurity and the social determinants of health. Many of the people interviewed emphasized the need to address growing mental health and substance use challenges alongside growing housing infrastructure needs.  

Housing is a key component of community social and economic wellbeing. In addition to the need for affordable, supportive, and accessible housing, a lack of available housing has direct impacts on economic development and tourism.  

There is an urgent need for action. CFY and MNL call on the province to work with municipalities and service groups to enact the recommendations listed in the report. 

“Municipal leaders want to facilitate housing solutions. The work by Hope Jamieson in the report Pull Together: Addressing Housing in Newfoundland and Labrador is an important step toward resolving the housing crisis. Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador looks forward to working with our partners and government to enact the recommendations in this report.” – Councillor Amy Coady, MNL President 

“Choices for Youth supports upwards of 1300 youth every year, and over 25% of those youth recently moved to St. John’s. This report sheds light on the causes of mounting housing insecurity in rural and remote regions of our province, and what we can do to address it. Through strong partnerships and investments across all levels of government and the community sector, we have an opportunity to reverse this trend, and support vulnerable populations closer to home.” – Jen Crowe, Senior Director of Strategy, Fund Development and External Relations, Choices for Youth  

“I’m grateful to all the municipal officials, service providers, and people with lived and living experience who shared their perspectives as a part of those research. This work represents an important milestone in understanding experiences of homelessness and housing insecurity in rural regions of Newfoundland and Labrador. The recommendations generated provide a useful blueprint for decision-makers to take meaningful steps toward addressing the housing crisis.” – Hope Jamieson, MBA, Annex Consulting, author of Pull Together: Addressing Housing in Newfoundland and Labrador 



Pull Together: Addressing Housing in Newfoundland and Labrador Full Report
Pull Together: Addressing Housing in Newfoundland and Labrador Executive summary 

Media Contacts 

Tobias Romaniuk
Marketing and Communications Officer
Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador

Katie Keats
Manager of Fund Development and Communications
Choices for Youth

Hope Jamieson, MBA
Annex Consulting