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Dr Judy Kraatz, Dr Annie Matan, Peter Newman
The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) broadly states that social housing is housing ‘supplied at prices that are lower than the general housing market and … distributed through administrative procedures … some form of state support and subsidy are inevitably involved with this tenure’ (Rosenfeld, 2015).
Based on the Australian Productivity Commission’s definition, social housing can be described as ‘below-market rental housing for people on low incomes and for those with special needs’, most of which is ‘highly subsidised and rent is determined by tenant income (generally set at 25 or 30% of household income)’ (Yates, 2013).
In Canada, social housing is an umbrella term to refer to all forms of housing developed under various government subsidy programs in both the private and public sectors. It includes housing now discontinued under the public housing program, all housing that is owned and operated by the federal, provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and housing that has been subsidized by the government and developed by a private and/or non-profit organization.