Event will focus on individuals' mental health and landlords' opportunities and responsibilities
TORONTO, May 22, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA) is excited to host landlords and community-based support providers at its Hoarding Forum, June 7 and 8, 2012 at the Crowne Plaza Toronto Airport Hotel. The event will provide vital training on working with, and housing, tenants who are hoarding to landlords from across the province.
The keynote speaker will be hoarding expert Dr. Randy Frost. Dr. Frost is a researcher and author of Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things. In addition, the Forum will feature Mary Boushel, Manager, Successful Tenancies, from Toronto Community Housing (TCHC), Doug Levitt, Partner at Horlick Levitt, Di Lella LLP, and a fire safety and community mental health experts. Our presenters will outline the impacts that hoarding has on community services and affordable housing landlords and what can done about it.
"Hoarding is a huge challenge for landlords across the province" says Jenn St. Louis, ONPHA's Manager of Local Networks and Member Support, "they want to help their tenants to live successfully in their home. But, in many cases, landlords don't have the financial or human resources to really help the individual and there may not be mental health and community services available in their area."
Hoarding is a complex issue that can have devastating consequences in a multi-residential context. There can be a significant risk of fires, like the one at 200 Wellesley St. E. in Toronto, which cause extensive damage to property, upset lives, and may be fatal. Until more funding for mental health services to help people who hoard becomes available, it will continue to fall to landlords to patch together services for tenants in order to avoid evicting them.
"We'll connect people and let them learn from the experts so that they know how to recognize a problem and who to call for help" says St. Louis, "our goal is make sure that landlords understand when and how they can help and when greater action is required. It's a balancing act that they have to navigate between the needs and safety of the individual who is hoarding and their neighbours."
For more event information visit: www.onpha.on.ca/hoardingforum
For almost 25 years, ONPHA has been the voice of non-profit housing in Ontario. Our 770 member organizations operate more than 160,000 non-profit housing units and provide housing for approximately 400,000 people such as the elderly, low-income families with children, the working poor, victims of violence and abuse, people living with developmental disabilities or mental illness and the homeless/hard-to-house.
Further information about ONPHA and non-profit housing can be found at: www.onpha.on.ca