Doug Ford urging commercial property landlords not to evict tenants during COVID-19


Published May 15, 2020 at 6:41 pm


In his daily COVID-19 update this afternoon, Premier Doug Ford assured residents that the province would continue to maintain a supply of household goods on store shelves, and urged commercial property landlords in Ontario not to evict their tenants for failing to meet this month’s rent.

“I know that people out there are seeing some shortages, from flour, yeast, and sugar, to disinfecting wipes and toilet paper,” said Ford.

After speaking with industry leaders, Ford says the province is doing everything it can to ensure residents can access essential household products.

“I’m happy to report that our supply chains remain strong. We have more than enough essential products in the system,” said Ford, who added that there’s more than enough to go around as long as “everyone only buys what they need.”

According to the premier, industries producing essential goods have also ramped up production to meet the increased demand and get their products on store shelves.

When asked about commercial tenants in the province who are in danger of being evicted this month for not being able to make their May rent, Ford said he sympathized with the tenants and urged landlords to be more flexible during these times.

“I side with the tenants — give them a break. Let them get in there and pay 25%. Between the federal government and provincial government we’re paying 50% of the rent,” said Ford, referring to the federal rent relief plan that asks small business tenants to only cover up to 25% of their rent.

“If I were them, I’d take 75%. I think that’s a pretty good deal for landlords,” Ford added. “You either get 75% or 0.”

The premier would not confirm the possibility of the government issuing a temporary pause on commercial evictions, and instead pleaded to landlords directly not to evict their tenants.

“Be a good landlord. Support them,” Ford said. “I can’t stand these vicious landlords. You gotta protect the little guy all the time.”

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