VTU and Belvedere Court tenants rallied against the eviction of another senior in their building - right in time for the New Year.
Steve Williams has lived at the Belvedere for 27 years and is now facing eviction as a result of new management who intend to empty and re-rent the entire building.
This eviction corresponds with an effort by building management to bribe, renovict, and intimidate the tenants of the building into ending their tenancies. Of the building’s 35 units, over ⅓ are now being held vacant. Seniors and tenants with disabilities and language barriers have been among the first to be targeted in this campaign of attrition on the part of the landlords.
The last pockets of affordability in Mt. Pleasant are disappearing and seniors are being rendered invisible with the gentrification of the area.
This is unfortunately not an isolated incident, but a trend in Vancouver. Seniors are targeted due to their long-term tenancies, which, due to lack of broader rent control, means that they are some of the last tenants with affordable rents left in Vancouver.
Increasing rental rates, the likelihood of being targeted and bullied by landlords, and the loss of familiar businesses and landmarks all contribute to seniors becoming isolated and being pushed out of their neighborhoods. More and more seniors are losing their homes and becoming homeless because homes are now investments and market forces are out of control in our city.
The VTU and Belvedere Residents Association rallied on January 2nd outside Belvedere Court, demanding:
- Real rent control, tying rent to the unit rather than the tenant, to dis-incentivize renovictions
- Eviction protections for seniors
- Eviction protections for tenants facing homelessness
- Eliminate the redundant 3-strike law for repeat late payment of rent
- More effective municipal protections for renters
In the News: Vancouver Metro Article
Thanks to BC Homeless Coalition for this video: