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Additional COVID-19 Funding for Vulnerable People

HAMILTON, ON - The Ontario government is providing an additional $14,851,000 in Social Services Relief Funds to help the City of Hamilton deliver critical services, create longer-term housing solutions and keep vulnerable people safe.

The City is appreciative of the supports and investments provided by the Provincial government. These funds will mitigate the financial pressure on the Municipal levy and support the continuation of critical COVID-19 related supports for vulnerable members of the community served by the homelessness system. In addition, these funds will help support the Hamilton council approved homelessness system post-COVID recovery and maximize municipal investments into the system.    

The City of Hamilton remains focused on balancing its response to emergency needs in the community, sustaining people’s housing with supports, and advancing long-term permanent solutions to Hamilton’s housing pressures.

Since the beginning of the pandemic through the Government of Ontario’s Social Service Relief Funds (SSRF) the City directed $37M into the housing and homelessness system response ensuring shelter operators could enact important COVID-19 protocols to reduce the risk of transmission for shelter clients and staff, including physical distancing measures, use of personal protective equipment, rapid testing and surveillance, temporarily increasing shelter system capacity by using hotel spaces and temporary shelter locations, implementing and staffing isolation shelter space(s) in response to the demands of the pandemic and outbreaks.

These funds also ensured community drop-in programs could expand and maintain services for vulnerable residents including meals, showers, harm reduction supplies, and overnight access drop-in services, as well as other much needed supports in the system.

“As cases rise and we enter a fourth wave, we must do all we can to ensure that all of us, particularly our most vulnerable, are safe and healthy with an affordable place to live. This funding comes at a welcome time and we are grateful for the ongoing support from our provincial partner.”

- Mayor Fred Eisenberger