Human Rights Claims

The Crisis Ends with Us: Request for a Review into the Systemic Denial of the Equal Right to Housing of Women and Gender-Diverse People in Canada

The Government of Canada’s failure to adequately address housing need and homelessness has manufactured a national human rights crisis for marginalized women and gender-diverse people. It has trapped us in situations of abuse and exploitation, separated us from our children, deepened our poverty, dislocated us from our lands and traditions, and eroded our dignity and self-determination. In some cases it has cost us our lives.

Canadian housing policy continues to prioritize profit over our right to a dignified life, to security, and to substantive equality. We disproportionately bear the consequences of the financialization of housing, but those of us who suffer most are rarely at decision-making tables or understood as rights-holders. Every day we watch the existing affordable housing stock dwindle at a rapidly escalating pace, driven by forces we cannot control, and decision-makers who do not hear our voices.

We see no future for ourselves in the current housing regime.

This Human Rights Claim, developed by the WNHHN Human Rights Task Force, articulates three key violations of the right to housing experienced by marginalized women and gender-diverse people across Canada:

  • Violation 1: Failure to provide adequate, accessible, and affordable housing
  • Violation 2: Failure to prevent and eliminate homelessness amongst women and gender-diverse people
  • Violation 3: Failure to regulate the financialization of housing in alignment with the right to housing

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Homeless on Homelands: Upholding Housing as a Human Right for Indigenous Women, Girls, Two-Spirit, and Gender-diverse People

In the context of inherent Indigenous rights, the National Housing Strategy Act (NHSA) emerges as a critical instrument that can be utilized to challenge colonial policies and mechanisms that attempt to displace Indigenous women, girls, Two-Spirit, and gender-diverse people from “their proper power and place.”

This Human Rights Claim, developed by the National Indigenous Feminist Housing Working Group, articulates four key violations of our inherent rights that must be reviewed by the Federal Housing Advocate:

  • Violation 1: Lack of Action on the Calls to Justice from the Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Report and Calls to Action from the Truth Reconciliation Commission Report
  • Violation 2: Failure to Provide Safe, Adequate and Culturally-Appropriate Housing, on Our Own Terms  
  • Violation 3: Interjurisdictional Neglect, Multiple Systems Failure, and Institutional Betrayal
  • Violation 4: Security of Tenure under NHS and Secure Indigenous Land Tenure

Read the Claim

Here’s how to get involved:

  1. Join the Women’s National Housing & Homelessness Network.

  2. Submit a Claim to the Federal Housing Advocate yourself, or with a group or organization. We would love to include your submission in our virtual database of claims! Please send us a copy at .

  3. Participate in a people’s tribunal, focus group, roundtable, or sharing circle in your community. Contact us at to find out where the nearest one is being held!

  4. Interested in hosting a focus group, roundtable, or sharing circle in your own community? We can help you organize! Reach out to us at .