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The province behaving like slumlords?

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The owner of several rental buildings with health and safety problems in Vancouver just happens to be the province.

It is listed on a new City of Vancouver website naming and shaming bad landlords.

A number of the infractions are under the Fire by-law but some fall under the Standards of Maintenance by-law which can include issues such as inadequate heat and hot water, pest infestations, tripping hazards on stairs and hallways, and leaky faucets among others.

BC Housing says it’s taking steps to address the infractions through a capital investment of nearly $1 million.  It says it’s also renovating both the Gastown and Marble Arch buildings as part of a $143 million investment to improve nearly 900 Single Room Occupancy units in Vancouver.

Jean Swanson with Carnegie Community Action Project is not happy about this news. “I guess what it just shows is the province is a slumlord and they’re treating residents of single room occupancy similar to the way slumlords treat them.”

She says those SROs aren’t suitable for living in and don’t have private bathrooms or kitchens. “They need to be cleaned up but even if they are they aren’t adequate housing.  It’s some of the worst housing in Canada.”

The City of Vancouver launched the site in its war against substandard rental housing.

It lets renters know which buildings have been cited by the city as having fire, life safety, maintenance, electrical, plumbing or other issues.

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Does it surprise you??!! When the Province only gives $350 for rent to people on Disability? PATHETIC! This province should be brought before a human rights tribunal! Forcing less fortunate people to live like scum! Liberals….

February 07, 2013 at 11:08 pm

Once again the City of Vancouver is attempting a slight of hand manoeuvre. Under the City of Vancouver Charter, they have an incredible amount of authority to rectify deficiencies in such buildings. This is particularly true of the Fire By-Law and the Standards of Maintenance by-law. Rather than letting inspectors do their job and enforce violations, the City cowers with excuses of how unfair it is to the residents of those buildings. It is neglect and dereliction of duty to knowingly put people’s lives in danger then do nothing about it. Assist renters to find alternate living arrangements and shut down those owners who are laughing about any kind of enforcement. It is well beyond time for the City of Vancouver to stand up and take on slum landlords regardless of who that landlord may be. Get on with it!

February 07, 2013 at 8:03 pm