This is a summary of information we have been able to pull together with help from Right To Housing and the new group Emergency Housing Justice. Find below a poster and social media tiles you can share on your personal profiles to educate our friends and neighbours about how COVID-19 is affecting our housing in Manitoba. Please download and share these resources to those who may need/use it!
My income has been impacted by the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and I can’t pay my rent! My landlord wants to evict me – what should I do?
[Red] Don’t panic! You DO NOT need to move out of your unit. A piece of paper doesn’t mean you’re evicted yet! As a tenant, you have two basic rights:
- You can fight your eviction in a hearing at the Residential Tenancies Branch (the court that judges disputes between tenants and landlords).
- You cannot be harassed while fighting eviction. You have all the same rights as a normal tenant, meaning your landlord can’t:
- Attempt to change your locks
- Enter your unit without 24hr notice and just cause (e.g. completing a repair)
- Damage the property
- Continually harass you to leave over the phone / over email / in person
- Call the police to remove you from your unitDue to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Residential Tenancies Branch (RTB) has ‘paused’ scheduling any ‘non-urgent’ eviction hearings. You will be allowed to stay in your unit until the RTB ‘unpauses’ and begins scheduling eviction hearings again on May 31. The only evictions allowed are for ‘severe impairment of safety’, such as threatening other tenants with a weapon or engaging in illegal activity.
[Green] If your landlord tries to violate your rights, you can call the Residential Tenancies Branch at (204) 945-2476 and they will contact your landlord to make them stop. You can also call the Tenant-Landlord Cooperation at (204) 927-2335 if you would like a housing advocate to talk to your landlord on your behalf.
[Purple] After May 31, your landlord can file for a hearing at the RTB and evict you for any rent you still owe. We don’t believe this is fair, and we want the government to ensure no tenants are evicted for owing rent after the pandemic is over. If you agree, please sign this petition demanding that the provincial government support tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic!
[Yellow] IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are on EIA, it is very important that you continue to pay your rent as EIA benefits are not impacted by COVID-19. Failing to pay your rent might impact your standing with EIA and affect your basic needs.
More information & details to come — as we learn more, we will share more! Stay safe!