Journal of Law and Social Policy

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English Abstract

This review essay challenges siloed thinking about housing precarity by bringing a sociological account of emergency shelters in Ottawa, Canada–Erin Dej’s book A Complex Exile–into conversation with recent scholarship from Canadian academics on residential tenancy law.3 One intuition underlying this essay is that we need to think about these disparate legal regimes as comprising a bigger system of housing law. Bringing these areas of law into conversation with one another allows us to identify common themes and these may inform statutory reform initiatives, changes to practice, and advocacy on related social issues. Promising innovations in one area of housing law may be relevant to the regimes that govern other shelter arrangements. Looking at housing law more holistically also enables us to identify how the different regimes leave gaps, create conflicts, and otherwise prove challenging for the individuals who navigate amongst them.

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