By Nancy Bediako
The COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the housing market have exacerbated challenges affecting vulnerable and marginalized communities in Toronto.
In March 2020, the Government of Ontario issued an emergency order to suspend tribunal proceedings and limitations periods for the Landlord and Tenant Board (“LTB”), and later passed Bill 184, Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, 2020 (“Bill 184”), ostensibly to provide greater protection to tenants during the emergency. On March 19, 2020, the Ontario’s Superior Court of Justice ordered an eviction moratorium to halt residential evictions in Ontario. The moratorium was subsequently lifted, and LTB proceedings resumed on September 14, 2020. On April 8, 2021, the eviction moratorium was again reinstated by a Provincial stay-at-home order, which is slated to end imminently, on June 2, 2021.
Despite the moratorium and the earlier suspension of LTB proceedings, observers have noted a sharp rise of homelessness and the proliferation of encampments in parks since the pandemic began.
This article outlines some of the changes and issues that Bill 184 has had on the eviction process at the LTB, and in particular, the effect it has had on racialized and marginalized communities in the City of Toronto.