In March of 2013, the Government of Yukon announced its intention to develop a Housing Action Plan to address housing challenges in the territory. Central to the envisioned planning process was the active participation of the many government, non-government, and private sector organizations and interests involved with or impacted by housing.
Four Yukon government departments worked together to oversee the Plan’s development. Yukon Housing Corporation (YHC) facilitated the development of the Plan with the support and participation of Health and Social Services (HSS), Community Services (CS), and Energy, Mines and Resources (EMR).
The planning process was kick started with a symposium in November 2013 that assembled over 75 government, non-government, and private sector representatives to identify the key housing issues and challenges in Yukon and develop the strategic priorities that would inform the Plan.
Subsequent to the symposium, four committees were struck to provide input and oversight to the Housing Action Plan.
- Land Availability and Housing Committee
- Steering Committee
- Community Advisory Committee
- Working Group Committees
The Working Group Committees were tasked with the development of the key actions underpinning the Plan. The Community Advisory Committee reviewed the Working Group Committees’ progress throughout this timeframe and provided recommendations to the Steering Committee.
With the draft key actions ready to present, YHC
staff met with municipalities, housing providers, and
First Nation government employees in various Yukon
communities to solicit feedback and identify the
actions that most closely resonated with local needs –
or alternately, where there were still gaps.
The committees approached their task with a
depth of learned experience and expertise. Some
housing challenges were clearly understood and the
corresponding results-based action easily articulated.
Other issues were more complex and the committees
concluded that a research-oriented action was
required to inform sound decision-making.
Similarly, the committees came to quick consensus
on what the key issues were and how they could
be addressed. Other issues triggered difficult
conversations at times. The fact that committee
members returned again and again to lend their
energy and knowledge to those conversations,
however difficult, speaks to their high level of
A wrap-up symposium was held in October 2014 and
provided over 60 stakeholders with the opportunity to
review the draft Plan contents and hone in on specific
topics, including implementation. The outcomes of
the symposium were reviewed by the committees and
final revisions were made accordingly.
The completion of the Housing Action Plan doesn’t
signal an end to the dialogue about housing; rather,
it ensures that they will continue. The Housing
Action Plan creates a strong foundation from which
governments and organizations involved with
housing can design and build solutions together.