Vladimir Putin

Systemic Racism, Housing, and the Realities of Black Canadians

Thursday, January 28, 2021

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Systemic Racism, Housing, and the Realities of Black Canadians

In Toronto’s lowest-income neighbourhoods, 69% of residents are racialized, while 73% of residents in Toronto’s highest income neighbourhoods are white. The increased attention to systemic racism has revealed to the general public what those in the housing industry have known for years: housing in Toronto and across the GTA is highly racialized. Historically, homeownership has helped Canadians advance in society and work to overcome barriers such as the income and wealth gap. However, for Black Canadians, the lack of access to the housing market has and continues to actively limit opportunities for the Black community now, and in generations to come. It is time to address this inequity, but doing so demands that we re-imagine the future shape of the GTA and seize opportunities to build affordable housing while creating a path to ownership for more black families.

This panel discussion will be moderated by Ene Underwood (CEO, Habitat for Humanity GTA). Panel participants will share their unique perspectives on the importance of enhancing the pathway to ownership for lower-income black households, and how this framework can be applied to additional underrepresented populations. Panel members include, Mwarigha (VP, Housing & Homelessness Services, Woodgreen), Stephen Diamond (CEO, Diamond Corporation & Chair, Waterfront Toronto), and Isaac Olowolafe (Founder, DreamMaker Developments & Chair, BlackNorth Housing Committee)

Stephen Diamond

Chief Executive Officer, DiamondCorp


Vice-President, Housing & Homelessness Services

Isaac Olowolafe

Founder, Dream Maker Inc.; Board of Directors, Sick Kids Foundation


Ene Underwood

Chief Executive Officer, Habitat for Humanity GTA