Is there really a housing crisis in Cowichan?

When I look at all the friends of my three kids, I don’t see any of them that had to leave the Valley

letters

Is there really a housing crisis in Cowichan?

What is the criteria for determining a housing crisis?

I hear the term tossed around frequently in the Valley. I even read in a B.C. wide publication that there were four districts experiencing a “housing crisis” and Duncan was one of them!

It seems to me that most people in the Cowichan Valley have buildings in which to live. If we are thinking about those who don’t have a building to live in, or are living in inadequate structures, that doesn’t necessarily equate with a housing crisis. In the case of the former, I see it more as an indicator of mental, physical, and/or emotional distress and in the latter, poverty.

Another possible way to determine whether we are in a housing crisis might be to look at family groupings. When I look at all the friends of my three kids, now in their 30 to 40s, I don’t see any of them that had to leave the Valley because they couldn’t find a house to live in. Some left because they had other designs for their lives; and even some of them returned, and were able to find homes.

So who is it that needs a home? It’s not like an Amazon hub that requires 5,000 employees is locating on the island. Is it just people who want to live here? If I wanted to live in a quiet little beachside village somewhere, would I expect the community to design itself around providing my habitation?

Or might it rather be that people making their living from building, or people who think that bigger is better, or people who are under the false notion that a larger tax base would solve all our problems, are the ones driving the notion of a “housing crisis”.

As I have expressed earlier, my worst fear is that the unbounded growth of the south island make it’s way unimpeded to the Cowichan Valley. So you can imagine my consternation when Mayor Siebring returned from Langford inspired by their growth strategy.

Can we please take the time and practise whatever is learned from the public engagement survey, to come together to decide what we want our collective future to look like in terms of population density in the light of maintaining community connection and economic and environmental sustainability?

Thoughtful, community, self determination, rather than unreasoned assumptions and external pressures.

Martha Lescher

Duncan

Letters

Just Posted

Soaker hoses laid down over corn seedlings, soon to be covered with mulch, will see to the watering needs of the bed through any summer drought. (Mary Lowther photo)
Mary Lowther column: Investing in soaker hoses is money well-spent

No-till gardening has a distinct advantage during drought

Karl McPherson, left, and Mary Morrice are the new head coach and general manager, respectively, at the Duncan Dynamics Gymnastics Club. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Manager charts a new course for Duncan Dynamics

More recreational programs to join competitive teams

Cute but fierce! Timber moonlights as an attack kitty. (Sarah Simpson/Citizen)
Sarah Simpson Column: Beware of Mr. Bite, the midnight attacker

Last week, in the middle of the night, I was awoken by… Continue reading

The province has come through with funding for Duncan Manor’s renewal project. (File photo)
Funding comes through for Duncan Manor’s renewal project

Money will come from the province’s Community Housing Fund

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

The Queen Victoria statue at the B.C. legislature was splattered with what looks like red paint on Friday. (Nicole Crescenzi/News Staff)
Queen Victoria statue at B.C. legislature vandalized Friday

Statue splattered with red paint by old growth forest proponents

Police cars are seen parked outside Vancouver Police Department headquarters on Saturday, January 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver police officer charged with assault during an arrest in 2019

The service has released no other details about the allegations

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Denmark soccer player Christian Eriksen collapses during game against Finland

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Nathan Watts, a member of the Tseshaht First Nation near Port Alberni, shares his story of substance use, a perspective he said isn’t seen enough. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Watts)
Public shaming, hate perpetuates further substance use: UVic researcher

Longtime addict Nathan Watts offers a user’s perspective on substance use

Most Read