Media Release

May 24, 2013

Women and Children to Benefit with Opening of New Libra House 

The Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador today celebrated the official opening of the new Libra House today, a 10-bed crisis shelter for women and children in Happy Valley-Goose Bay.

The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister Responsible for Newfoundland and Labrador, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC); along with the Honourable Paul Davis, Minister Responsible for Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation (NLHC), made the announcement.

“Our government recognizes the urgent need to provide women and children a safe place during a crisis situation. By providing funding to this project, we are also following through on our commitment to provide safe and affordable housing for all Canadians,” said Minister MacKay. “The Government of Canada remains focused on four priorities, as outlined by the Prime Minister, that Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being a citizen of this country, and of course, their personal financial security.”

The $200,000 funding for Libra House was provided in 2009 through the Shelter Enhancement Program of the CMHC-Newfoundland and Labrador Renovation Programs Agreement. NLHC has also provided $50,000 through its Provincial Homelessness Funding Program and CMHC provided $20,000 in Seed Funding.

“This new facility will enable Libra House to provide victims of family violence with a secure and supportive refuge at a very vulnerable time in their life,” said Minister Davis. “On behalf of the Provincial Government and Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation, we commend the Libra House staff for their hard work and dedication to helping women and children. Their commitment helped make this safe haven a reality.”

Since 1985, Libra House has provided safe temporary shelter and support for women and children throughout Labrador who have experienced violence or abuse. Libra House offers 24-hour service, seven days a week, and also operates a 24-hour crisis phone line.

“This is an amazing milestone in the life of Libra House,” said Janet O’Donnell, Executive Director of Libra House. “This new building is giving us even more resolve to continue providing a refuge and space that is secure and accessible for women and their children escaping relationship violence. We are thankful for the ongoing support we receive from our funding partners.”

The Government of Canada, through CMHC, will invest approximately $2 billion in housing this year. Of this amount, $1.7 billion will be spent in support of close to 594,000 households living in existing social housing. In Newfoundland and Labrador, this represents some 11,400 households. These investments are improving the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in existing social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people.

To find out more about how the Government of Canada and CMHC are working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca Opens in a new window.

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Media contacts:

Carol Ann Carter
Director of Communications (Acting)
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-1758, 709-631-9505
carolanncarter@gov.nl.ca
Jenny Bowring
Communications Manager
Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation
709-724-3055
jmbowring@nlhc.nl.ca

Katherine LeBlanc
Consultant, Communications & Marketing
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
902-426-6581
krleblan@cmhc.ca

Jan O'Driscoll
Press Secretary
Office of Minister Finley
819-994-2482

Janet O’Donnell
Executive Director, Libra House
Happy Valley-Goose Bay
(709) 896-8022
librahouse@nf.aibn.com