TORONTO — The Ontario NDP's Housing and Tenant Rights critic Jessica Bell (University—Rosedale) is warning of the dangers of Doug Ford’s decision to lift the evictions ban on Wednesday, despite the fact most COVID-19 orders will remain in effect.
"The pandemic is far from over, and thousands of people are struggling due to lost jobs and income that's in no way their fault," said Bell. "But Premier Doug Ford’s first move in the re-opening is to lift the evictions ban in the middle of a pandemic. It’s a choice that’s unethical, callous and unsafe.
“Ford says it’s not safe to start reopening Ontario yet – but he’s greenlighting the evictions that force people to couch surf, to live on the streets, or go to shelters. It’s hypocritical.”
The Ontario NDP has been calling for a moratorium on evictions until after the pandemic, plus tougher protections against illegal evictions, and rent subsidies for households that have lost income due to COVID-19.
"The people who have lost jobs during COVID-19 are disproportionately our frontline workers, the people who clean hospitals, care for the elderly, sort and deliver packages, and serve the food we eat," said Bell, stressing that some of the evictions approved by the Landlord Tenant Board are illegal.
"Instead of helping people in need, the Ford government is kicking them while they’re down and forcing some people to lose their home. The evictions need to stop."