July 2nd, 2020
July 2nd, 2020
QUEEN’S PARK — Suze Morrison, Ontario NDP Tenant Rights critic, said Doug Ford is making Bill 184 even worse by quietly sneaking through changes that will make it easier for landlords to bully tenants into signing bad repayment plans during the pandemic and then evict them without a hearing.
Bill 184 heads to clause-by-clause consideration today at committee, where the Ford government is introducing amendments that will expand the reach of troubling provisions by making them retroactive. Those provisions effectively rob tenants of opportunities to defend themselves against bad landlords or to even have a hearing at the Landlord and Tenant Board at all. Liberal MPP Stephen Blais supported one such amendment.
“Thousands of tenants are worried about losing their homes after falling behind on rent due to the pandemic,” said Morrison. “While landlords may not be able to execute evictions just yet, they haven’t stopped threatening tenants that they’re coming.
“Now, Doug Ford, helped by the Liberals, is making his eviction bill even worse by paving the way for landlords to bully tenants into signing bad repayment plans during the pandemic and then evict them without a hearing.”
Ford has refused to provide rent relief during the pandemic, and his weak pause on the enforcement of evictions leaves tenants vulnerable the second it ends. The Ontario NDP is tabling an amendment to Bill 184 that would ban pandemic-related evictions altogether, as proposed by the Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario.
“We should be banning pandemic-related evictions completely, not giving landlords more tools to squeeze tenants out of their homes,” said Morrison. “If the government doesn’t scrap its scheme to fast-track evictions, Ontario is going to have an even bigger crisis on its hands, because thousands of tenants stand lose the roofs over their heads.”