Xstrata pledges funds to support housing study

Local Confidence is a Timmins 2020 initiative that aims to share the good things happening in Timmins through one-on-one interviews with various members of the community. For more information about the series, including links to all the interviews, click here.

Xstrata pledges funds to support housing STUDY

In April 2013, Timmins 2020 announced that Xstrata has pledged a significant contribution to support to completion of a housing study. Read the press release here. Luc Brousseau, Human Resource Manager at Xstrata Copper, answered a few questions to share reasons why Xstrata has decided to get involved in the housing project.

1. What issues or concerns are you aware of regarding housing in Timmins?
As the City’s largest private-sector employer, we are keenly aware of the housing shortage in the community as we try to recruit employees to fill position vacancies. We know that demand exceeds availability thus making recruitment a challenge. We are also aware of the lack of affordable or social housing for vulnerable segments of the population. In fact, our stakeholders have confirmed this through recent consultations we’ve held with them. They identified affordable housing as a priority in the community. As both an employer and corporate citizen committed to sustainable social investments, we see the housing study as an opportunity to provide some important data to guide our social investment decisions and perhaps even to suggest some creative and sustainable solutions to the problem.

2. Why is housing important for the success of organizations in Timmins?
The availability of a wider range of housing options will allow Timmins to be more competitive as a community in attracting and retaining employees in all sectors, including mining and healthcare. In addition to economic benefits, there is also the social impact to consider. When the most vulnerable citizens have the security of permanent, affordable shelter, more resources may be redirected to education, skills training and literacy programs, mental health services and other areas that may address some of the root causes of socio-economic disenfranchisement. Residents, businesses, industry, the community in general, would all benefit.

3. When it comes to housing, what progress do you hope Timmins will make between now and 2020?
We would like to see a housing strategy in place that will address the needs of all community stakeholders.