ADUvocacy: Dwellings & Discourse

Building Forward: Housing for Vulnerable Populations

Blog 9 – 2 -3 min. read
December 13, 2023 | By: Iana Lanceta

In respect to housing, vulnerable populations can experience precarious living situations and struggle to find affordable options.  Low-income families, the elderly, individuals with lower levels of education, racialized groups, Indigenous people, and newcomers represent vulnerable populations who may experience inequities in many facets of life. As the weather becomes colder, ensuring vulnerable populations are comfortably and securely housed becomes even more essential.

Inflation is one major contributor to the housing issue, and the inflation rate has risen significantly since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Of course, the impact of rising prices is not felt equally among demographic groups, and vulnerable populations in the bottom income bracket spend a higher share of their budgets on necessities (such as food and shelter) compared to higher income individuals. 

Social housing projects, like the one completed in Central Winnipeg over the summer, provide assistance to vulnerable populations through their affordable housing complexes. However, waitlists for social housing projects can be long (some up to two years or more) and experts urge for an increase in affordable housing supply. According to Dr. Thomas Davidoff, associate professor and director of UBC’s Centre for Urban Economics and Real Estate, loosening zoning and redistributing profits from development among low-income populations will allow rental units to become more affordable.

Driving towards a diversity of affordable housing solutions, including ADUs, can greatly help vulnerable populations during the housing crisis, and providing your voice in support is one step toward ensuring vulnerable populations are comfortably housed. 


Buffie, N. (2023, June 5). Central Winnipeg housing complex for vulnerable populations move-in Ready. 

Uppal, S. (2023, February 8). Rising prices and the impact on the most financially vulnerable: A profile of those in the bottom family income quintile. Insights on Canadian Society. 

Wilson, C. (2022, July 22). Fewer Canadians live in unaffordable housing, but issues remain for some.