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Sudbury MPP says tenants need more protection from landlords

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Sudbury NDP MPP Jamie West says the province needs to tackle the issue of predatory landlords.

Sudbury MPP Jamie West at CTV News Northern Ontario studio on Frood Road in Greater Sudbury in May 2024. (Ian Campbell/CTV News)

West took up the call for better protection for renters after tenants in a Greater Sudbury building were targeted by an out-of-town landlord looking to evict them.

At Queen’s Park last week, West asked the Ontario legislature for more protection for tenants.

“Countless Sudbury tenants have contacted my office, reporting instances of their landlord attempting to coerce them into vacating their apartments,” he said in a news release.

“Landlords have gone as far as shutting off essential utilities like heat and hydro.”

West told CTV News that cases like these are why stronger rules and enforcement are needed.

"In these situations, you have this landlord who is deliberately not fixed the heat in the building,” he said.

“(The landlord is) text messaging these tenants and saying how much money do I have to pay you to move out so I can raise the rent in the unit and cancelling hydro.”

West added that because many landlords do not live in town, it can be very difficult to get a hold of them.

“The influx of out-of-town landlords purchasing Sudbury properties, skirting the rules and displacing local tenants to maximize their profit margins while the government sits back is outrageous,” he said.

West said this is part of a pattern he is seeing in the Sudbury area.

“The housing crisis in Sudbury is reaching a tipping point, with landlords taking advantage of the situation to displace long-standing residents and hike up rents,” said West.

West has called on the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to do more to protect renters from predatory practices and to “prioritize measures to ensure rent affordability and safeguard tenants’ rights.” 

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