Every night in Toronto, over 8,000 people experience homelessness. These are the individuals who find beds in the city’s shelters. Many more experience “hidden homelessness,” staying with relatives, friends or strangers, with little sense of permanence or stability.
Toronto has a critical shortage of safe and affordable housing, and the wait for supportive housing can be several years long. A growing number of families and individuals spend more than 50% of their income on housing, and are forced to cut spending on basic necessities, from food to medication. Rising rents are displacing people from the communities where they work, and for lower-income earners, unexpected job loss or health challenges can quickly lead to homelessness.