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Ford Goes Behind Tenants’ Backs To Weaken Tenant Protections

Ford Goes Behind Tenants’ Backs To Weaken Tenant Protections

Emergency Action: Text Doug Ford now at 416-805-2156 or email him at [email protected] to ask why he is making it easier for landlords to evict tenants in the midst of a global pandemic that has made paying rent impossible for tens of thousands of tenants across Ontario.

Ford Goes Behind Tenants’ Backs To Weaken Tenant Protections

Today, the Conservative government made clear why the Landlord and Tenant Board and repayment plans are no solution for tenants. This afternoon, without notice, the Conservative government brought forward a bill for second reading meant to amend the Residential Tenancies Act. The vote for this bill, ironically titled “Protecting tenants”, will occur tomorrow morning around 11:30 AM. While tenants have been waiting for a meaningful response to the rent crisis amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the provincial government has instead chosen to attack tenants further.

Bill 184 aims to speedup evictions by limiting tenants’ legal defences and in some cases removing the requirement to hold eviction hearings. Previously, renters were able to raise issues like chronic disrepair at eviction hearings and the Board had the discretion to deny eviction in cases where it found the landlord had not met its obligations. If Bill 184 passes, tenants would need to give notice in writing of these complaints before a hearing occurs. When landlords apply to evict tenants for late rent, the tribunal can make repayment agreements. Under the new law, if tenants are unable to fulfill those repayment agreements, landlords would not have to go back to the tribunal for an eviction hearing. Instead, the tribunal could issue a quick eviction order without a hearing.

In the absence of financial relief that surpasses the average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment in Toronto and in the face of attempts to make evictions easier for landlords, a clear message has been sent to residential tenants: We must organize with our neighbours. We must resist all attempts at eviction. And the Landlord and Tenant Board will not save us.

Tenants in Ontario are staring down the barrel of their third rent payment during the COVID-19 crisis. Not only have the difficulties we face been given nothing more than lip-service by provincial legislators and landlords, now we see a legislative initiative from the Provincial government that is a direct threat to tenants and a gift to landlords that want to kick us out of our homes.

Any attempt by landlords to evict tenants with the assistance of the LTB and the Provincial government during or immediately after this crisis should be understood by all Ontarians as sacrificing the health and safety of tenants for the profits of landlords.

We cannot wait for hearings at the LTB to take action. Ford has worked to ensure that landlords are provided added legal protection once the courts reopen while refusing to address the rent crisis under COVID-19. Tenants need a permanent ban on evictions for rent arrears during COVID. Tenants have been waiting for 2 months for their landlords to negotiate – and the only response from landlords and the government is an attack.

Ask Ministers and the press: “Why are premier Ford and the Conservatives making it easier for landlords to evict tenants in the midst of a global pandemic that has made paying rent impossible for tens of thousands of tenants across Ontario?”

Premier Ford 416-805-2156 @fordnation
Minister of Housing, Steve Clark 416-585-7000, 613-342-9522 @SteveClarkPC
CBC Toronto: (416) 205-5808
CityNews: (416) 599-2489
CP24: (416) 384-2400
Global News: (416) 446-5460
Toronto Star: (416) 869-4300

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Zackary Jordan

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