The right to housing for people with disabilities: Accessibility

Publication Type
Subject Matter
National Monitoring Mechanism

The right to housing for people with disabilities: Accessibility - Text version

We are monitoring the right to adequate housing for people with disabilities in Canada. We are looking at the accessibility of housing. Do people with disabilities have housing that meets their accessibility needs? 27% of Canadians have a disability. That’s about 8 million people.Footnote 1

What we foundFootnote 2

  • Housing is not meeting many people’s accessibility needs.

    In 2022, 16% of people with physical disabilities said their homes did not have the physical aids they needed.

  • The real numbers are probably much higher. They do not include:

    • People with other types of disabilities and their accessible housing needs.Footnote 3

    • People living in institutions, like group homes and prisons.

What people told us:Footnote 4

  • “I live in a basement apartment because that’s all I can afford. I have to crawl up the stairs like a little kid. I can’t reach the handrail.”

  • “I have environmental sensitivities. The landlord doesn’t enforce the non-smoking policy. They also use pesticides around and in the building.”


  • The federal government should lead the way to build a barrier-free Canada. All housing built with government funding should be free of barriers.

  • Canada must update its building codes. These codes must respect Canadian and international human rights laws. They should cover all types of housing. This would make sure all new housing is free of barriers.

  • Governments should report on how many accessible and adaptable housing units are available, and how many are needed.Footnote 5