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240 new complex care units to be built across B.C.

20 of the units will be built on Pacific Ave in Kelowna
Kelowna Mayor Tom Dyas making an announcement on complex care housing in Kelowna on April 15, 2024. (Brittany Webster/Capital News)

Phase two of the province’s Complex Care Housing was announced in Kelowna on April 15, an addition of 240 new complex care units across B.C.

Minister of Mental Health and Addictions Jennifer Whiteside addressed the crowd from 1144 Pacific Avenue, currently an empty field.

“I have to acknowledge that yesterday we marked eight years since the province declared a public health emergency in response to the toxic drug crisis, and in British Columbia, we have lost more than 14,000 members of our communities, our loved ones, people who were our brothers, sisters, uncles, aunties, friends, neighbours, and there is no community in British Columbia, or indeed across our country, that has not been touched by this crisis. That is why we are working so urgently to provide the services that people need when and where they need them.”

The new units will support people with significant mental health and addictions challenges and on the verge of homelessness.

“Today’s announcement is a celebrated and much-needed investment in our community, as we strive to provide dignified and compassionate care and housing for our most vulnerable residents,” said Kelowna Mayor Tom Dyas. “We are proud to have contributed municipal land for this new site and to have worked closely with government and agency partners on finding solutions for complex challenges of social, health, housing and safety issues. This project will have a significant impact on the health and safety of our community as we continue to grow.”

On the site of the announcement, 1144 Pacific Avenue, there will be 20 new units constructed and includes at least 20 supportive housing units. The project will soon move into the design phase and will be looking to the public for input.

Other communities benefiting from the announcement are Abbotsford, Burnaby, Kamloops, Nanaimo, New Westminster, Prince George, Sechelt, Surrey, Vancouver, and Victoria. Forty of the units will be Indigenous-lead.

Complex Care Housing was first announced in 2022 and has provided services to 443 individuals in B.C.

Complex-care housing is a part of the Province’s Safer Communities Action Plan, which is taking action to address the challenges to keep people safe and communities strong. This initiative is supported by Budget 2023, which committed $266 million to fund these services, including $169 million in capital funding to build new homes in the province.

READ MORE: Central Okanagan getting emergency ready

1144 Pacific Ave, Kelowna will be the new site of 20 complex care units. (Brittany Webster/Capital News)

Brittany Webster

About the Author: Brittany Webster

I am a video journalist based in Kelowna and capturing life in the Okanagan
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