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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

Petition drives organized against Ontario's Bill 184

Groups are demanding that the bill, which makes residential evictions easier, be scrapped and that Toronto Mayor John Tory take action to oppose it.

Photo of July 6 march in Toronto via PeoplesDefenceTO on twitter

As resistance to Ontario's dangerous anti-tenant Bill 184 has grown on the streets and in the court of public opinion, groups organizing to try to stop the legislation are calling on people to sign petitions aimed at both the premier, Doug Ford, and the Mayor of Toronto, John Tory.

Leadnow is circulating a petition, signed so far by over 7,000 people, calling on the bill to be scrapped altogether.

After noting that "Doug Ford’s mass eviction bill could make thousands of people homeless in just three weeks" they go on to say:

Bill 184 would allow the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) to issue eviction orders without so much as a hearing. Many renters have backlogs of rent because of COVID-19 — and kicking them out because of things beyond their control is heartless.
Ford made big promises to protect renters and ban evictions — and enjoyed a huge boost in popularity for his policies during COVID-19. But now, he's caving to the landlord lobby and trying to sneak through this bill before the public notices.

They are asking that we add our names in opposition before it is too late.

Meanwhile the group Parkdale Organize, which also want the bill scrapped and was involved in organizing the rally against the bill on July 6 that saw hundreds protest at Queen's Park and then march on the Mayor's elite condo residence downtown, wants people to remind the Mayor that he can stand up for tenants.

In an effort at diversion and obfuscation Tory has claimed that there is little he can do as the legislation is provincial, even though he says he is opposed to the fact that the bill could allow evictions without a hearing . Parkdale Organize's petition notes that this is not true.

It calls on the Mayor and council to:

1. Use the Mayor’s emergency powers under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to implement an eviction moratorium in the City of Toronto to protect the health, safety and welfare of Toronto tenants;
2. Call on the Ontario government to repeal Bill 184 and to take eviction and forced rent payments off the table for unpaid rent during the months of the COVID-19 crisis;
3. Direct Toronto Police Services to not participate in the enforcement of evictions;
4. Declare support for all Toronto tenants that cannot pay rent due to COVID-19 that refuse to abandon their homes.

As Alykhan Pabani noted in People's Voice:

With a premier deploying wanton immiseration and a mayor unwilling to resist it, Toronto’s tenants have found themselves in the midst of a class war they can not afford to lose.

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