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Cape Breton housing bylaw change could help people living with disabilities


There may soon be new housing options in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM) for people living with disabilities.

On Tuesday evening, CBRM council unanimously approved a motion put forth by Mayor Amanda McDougall-Merrill to change a land-use bylaw that would allow secondary housing units – often referred to as ‘accessory dwelling units’ – to be built on single-family residential lots.

One reason for the proposed change is the Nova Scotia government’s plans in the coming years to phase out institutional-style living spaces for people with disabilities.

CBRM councillor Cyril MacDonald spoke to CTV Atlantic about the topic on Wednesday.

“I think this is an opportunity for folks who maybe have some vacant land”, MacDonald said. “(People who have) always wanted to put up a garage, or always wanted to put up an income property. They can now do so, and they can house a person with a disability – who, of course, would have support staff and caretakers and what have you.”

MacDonald added the municipality is having discussions with Nova Scotia’s Department of Community Services about how this might best be rolled out to serve peoples’ varying needs.

Council has now requested a report from the municipality’s planning department about the overall viability of the idea, but it’s not yet clear when that might be complete.

For more Nova Scotia news visit our dedicated provincial page. Top Stories

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