Conservative leader says he apologized for calling Niagara Falls home a ‘shack’


Published July 20, 2023 at 5:13 pm

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre speaks at a press conference yesterday with Niagara Falls as his backdrop. (Screenshot: CPAC)

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre has taken a step back, saying he apologized to an Ontario woman after he describing the home she is renting as a “shack.”

During his speech, Poilievre was comparing housing prices on the Canadian and American sides of Niagara Falls, pointing out that there are countless listings on the U.S. side in the $200,000 to $250,000 bracket.

Poilievre said, “It costs $550,000 Canadian for a tiny little shack” before giving out the house’s address.

The comment stirred up a hornet’s nest, partially because he gave the address but mostly for his description of the two-storey bungalow as a “shack.”

His comments got back to Asha Letourneau, who rents the home in Niagara Falls and works as a waitress nearby, and she was not impressed with his description.

“He called it a shack. A shack. That was a little embarrassing also because it’s not,” she told one media outlet. “It’s not the greatest house on the street but it’s definitely not a shack.”

However, now Poilievre has told the National Post that he apologized to Letourneau, adding, “Her home is, in many ways, not a lot different than the one I grew up in.”

That said, he quickly got back on track with his criticism of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“My point was that every waitress, welder, barber, and factory worker should be able to afford a home, which is not the case in Canada today, after housing costs have doubled under Trudeau and are often twice what they are minutes away south of the border,” the Conservative leader said to the National Post.

“We are paying for government gatekeepers and inflation. We need to remove bureaucracy and taxes to build, build, build, and bring homes all workers can afford.”

Smaller bungalows of this style are actually called a “victory home.” Thousands of them were built post-war (1946-1955) for small families when the economy was booming. They are both starter or even lifetime homes for many Canadians.


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