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SOC 470
Cheryl Teelucksingh

Toronto: Housing and Gentrification week 7 1. Housing in Toronto • In terms of macro level, it suggest that economy is doing well- house booming • The city needs to have mixing housing types • It’s important in terms of indicating sense of belonging, social status and class. It is also important for immigrant because immigrants perceive sense of establishment in the city. • Variety of housing types- a. Homeownership- 60% of housing stock, b. Private rental- in various locations, owned by corporates or individuals c. Public rental- government subside, affordable o Social housing vs. public housing- it refers to who is responsible for providing housing. Public housing is subsided by government- either provincial or municipal government. E.g. Region park. Social housing when you have some organization or non-profit organization providing the subsides housing- co-op, churches, 65% of TCHC Housing issues: • Private market makes it hard for people to afford the houses . • Annexation- a lot of housing happens with annexation as the city expands. • Early Toronto-there was no issue of mixing land usage, there was little urban planning till WWI, no garbage control. People had control over their land usage. • After WWI- Because of the health issues, there was a need for urban planning. • After WWII, under the national housing act, the government decided to provide subsides housing. We also got CMCH, which made people able to own a house. • The recent government is trying to pull it out of the mortgage business.(neo-liberal polices) • Toronto is the second expensive place to buy a house in Canada. • In the city of Toronto, part of the challenge we have a very expensive housing. 2. Affordable housing Toronto • 45% of income, people are paying for their housing ( expected is not more than 30%) • It is almost like a competition to get a house • Vacancy rate is very low, it is however better in suburbs • Changing in demographics (new comers, young generation and senior) causes high demand. Because of the high demand and low supply in Toronto, house prices are rising. • Old buildings in inner suburbs are being repaired under tower renewal project. • Long waiting times for social housing is up to 8 years sometimes. There are some rental places resides more than they are supposed to- survival strategies. • Basement apartments- although it is illegal • Homelessness- tends to be ignored, rarely spoken. Shelter places are limited. 3. Settlement Patterns A. Immigrant settlement- prior to 1970s a. Ethnic Enclaves: Chinese, Jewish and Italian neighbours. They formed these residential places which are small replicas of their origin of countries • Chicago school zone model-very consistent, invasion and succession also explains this b. Institutional completeness: Parallel governments, some of the criticism in multicultural Toronto. As they become more affluent, some of them move out of these enclaves. E.g. Italian people from college to St. Clair. B. After 1970s • Patterns are changing slowly. • What are we seeing now, new comers are no longer coming to these ethnic enclaves. No longer concentric zone model • Settlement is all over place. This is changing suburbs. o it is problematic because language services and other social services are not usually offered in suburbs. 4. Gentrification and the Manhattanization of Downtown Toronto • Gentrification: Not all gentrification is bad, it is normally associated people with more resources moving into working class and lower income people’s neighbours • Jane Jacobson- movement of mix housing • Risk takers- who are drawn into the interesting architecture, avoid suburbs. It was perceived as a good thing- vibrant and balance between different income groups. It allowed multiculturalism and cultural dynamics. They did not want to change the neighbourhood. • Investors- where we are now, these are the people who are looking the buy houses and tear them down to build condos. They also buy characteristics houses and renovated them sell them higher prices. • They are asking for change, e.g. they want Starbucks, yogo studio • Rising property values, taxes are gone up and living downtown become more expensive Concentric zone model theory- contradiction with the theory, e.g. downtown Toronto is more affluent than suburbs • Displacement of lower income people • Region park- is interesting combination of social and public housing. It becomes stigmatized neighborhood. Cleaning up the neighborhood. • More condo developments than any other cities in North America • Homogenous sense of housing- condos (like suburbs), more professionals, middle income people, less multicultural environments. • Condos are actually owned by people who don’t live in Toronto. • Some people think that it’s an option for housing o Affordability is still an issue. Lecture Objectives: ü To understand the importance of housing from both a macro/structural level and a micro level. ü To examine changes in Toronto’s housing policy ü To consider changes in immigrant settlement patterns in Toronto and the link to suburbanization and segregation. ü To understand urban gentrification as being a two stage process involving gentrifiers as a) risk-takers and then b) investors. ü To examine the strengths and weaknesses associated with gentrification of downtown Toronto ü New Concepts: • public housing • social housing • ethnic enclaves • gentrification Dates that should be remembered (i.e. testable material): • 1949 National Housing Act • 1946 Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) • 1984 federal government cuts to Canadian social housing • Understand immigrant settlement patterns both: a) before 1970s and b) after 1970s Week 9- Urban Crime and Social Regulation 1. Defining the Concepts • Deviance: Anything is not socially acceptable, For instance- bullyingà it is relatively new. It assumed that we know what is normal behaviour. It is very gray area because what it is considered to be normal behaviour? • Broader category • Crime: It’s a sub category, deemed the most problematic. It is harmful; thus, we take punitive actions against. Punishment is associated with crime is reactive. Reactive- we only punish the people after the effect. • Social Regulation: mainly government imposed restriction, they are meant to discourage people. They are more proactive. Particular agents who are interesting shaping people behaviour. • Increasing in the city because of the feeling that we are monitored • Encourage behaviour deemed socially desirable o Security guards- intend to stop theft from stealing. • Loitering- deemed to be problematic Larger objective in mind- attempt to make people uncomfortable • Correct people’s behaviour- cameras- e.g. Gerard and Yonge Adam’s reading • Working class teenagers are being seen more consistent with deviance behaviour • Deviance and crime are socially constructed. According to time and context. Same sex relationship is decriminalized and normalized. Smoking, how people perceived smoking are different than before- seemingly acceptable, however it is changing • Gender and crime • Media à set sort of the agenda, a lot off behaviour are confirmed by the media as crime, who are the problem, what places are seemed deviant places. • Corporationsà encouraging people to keep spending, social regulation based on their economic interest • Affluent home ownersà home owner association forces regulations and rules, especially in the USA, the city of Toronto- whether or not people can have chickens at their backyard. 2. Fear of Crime perceptions vs. the reality of crime / they don’t match • The numbers of shooting are actually decreasing. • High profile crimes contributes to our perceptions. WHO FEAR? • Although women most fear the crime, men are usually victim of the crime • Large cities- people tend to think the crime is usually happening. However, statistic shows different. The crime rate is higher in Manitoba than Toronto. • Milbrandtà they are all steps to protect against crime, fear of public space are constructed as places you have to be concerned. • Safe Street Act- aggressive solicitors such as squece kids, homeless people— impose to clean up the streets, however it tends to ignore why people are homeless • Public transit security- request the stop program for woman, designated places • Video surveillances in public spaces— the whole idea of being anonymous Creating the culture of fear 3. Vision of the “Good city” • the good city offers economic opportunities • the whole notion of the sense of community • moral dimension- what’s right and wrong, shared commitment on what is good • surveillance—community watch and neighbour watch • tends to connect deviant behaviour with deviant places • urban renewal programsà cleaning up neighbourhoods, moving lower income people to other parts of the city • moral judgement is imposed with urban renewal programs • encourage change in behaviour • however, it may impose negative consequences on people 4. Race and Policing Toronto • concerns about gang violence is linked with a particular racial group • Racial profiling: seeing people through of the stereotypical lens • Criminal profiling: It relies on actual data • Distinguishing seemed very blur • Us vs. themà social distant is problematic,
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