We’ve had an eventful past week here at the Homeless Hub. On Tuesday December the 15th we observed the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers, also known as Red Umbrella Day. Joyce Arthur, a founding member of the national sex worker advocacy network FIRST, contributed a piece on the use of stigmatizing language in the media and its effects on the way we view sex workers. Using words like “hooker” in the headline of a story about a woman’s murder will set up the audience to not care about her or the incident and reinforce the stigma of sex workers.

We also updated our section on the sex trade industry to better reflect the current situation surrounding prostitution laws and how they are being challenged in court. Just on Friday, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the country’s major laws governing sex workers, making the trade safer for the people involved. The threat of HIV, arrest, and substance abuse still threaten this community, especially sex workers who started before the age of 18.

In case you missed it, we had our debut episode of our podcast last week. We had a special opportunity to interview Dr. Valerie Tarasuk from the University of Toronto on increasing food insecurity in Canada and the use of food banks. As Dr. Tarasuk puts it, there is no evidence to show that going to a food bank "fixes" food insecurity. To checkout more of her insightful remarks you can listen to the full podcast, and to learn more about food insecurity in Canada read the latest Household Food Insecurity report.

Our infographic last week by Simon Lewchuk, a policy analyst with Citizens for Public Justice, was on the benefits of replacing current welfare programs with Guaranteed Livable Income. The policy, which guarantees every citizen a standard amount of income, is being considered by countries all around the world. It would remove the social stigma of welfare and save costs that range into the billions in healthcare and the criminal justice system by ensuring that everyone has enough to live above poverty.

The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation just released its housing report for 2013. It examines housing from a variety of perspectives and looks at regional and municipal trends including measuring availability, affordability, sustainability and trends.