VANCOUVER ISLAND, B.C- More women and children in BC who are victims of domestic abuse are going to have safe places to go.

According to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the Government of British Columbia will build 1,500 new supportive homes throughout the province over the next 10 years.

“Women fleeing abuse need a safe and welcoming place to go, where they can find comfort and security to heal,” said Premier John Horgan.

“Our government is making the first significant investment in transition and supportive housing in 20 years, to give women and children escaping dangerous situations the security and support they need.”

Through the new Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund, the Province will invest $734 million to build and operate the new units.

This will include transition houses, safe homes, second-stage and long-term housing.

The new housing will include support staff who will provide a range of services, including emotional support and safety planning to make sure women and children receive the help they need during a difficult and stressful time in their lives.

“Fleeing violence often results in poverty and homelessness for women and their children,” said Joanne Baker, executive director, BC Society of Transition Houses.

“Secure, stable housing can provide a foundation for recovery and economic empowerment. The reality or risk of homelessness frequently results in women returning to violence, which means the Province’s investment in affordable housing that is dedicated to women and children escaping violence is crucial.”

According to the ministry, the new women’s housing will be operated by non-profit providers, who specialize in housing and supports for women and children who are experiencing or are at risk of violence.

BC Housing is sending out an expression-of-interest to select the non-profit operators.

BC Housing will select projects based on community need, with the goal of building at least 500 supportive housing units within the next three years, and 1,500 over the next decade.

Read Homes for B.C., government’s 30-point plan to address housing affordability for British Columbians: bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf

To find out what the Province is doing to improve housing affordability, visit: news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges (https://news.gov.bc.ca/factsheets/bc-government-addressing-housing-affordability-challenges)