East Hamilton Tenants Declare May 1st Rent Strike

The Hamilton Tenants Solidarity Network

On April 24th, at a mass meeting at the local community centre, dozens of tenants from four high-rise apartment buildings in East Hamilton committed to going on rent strike on May 1st. This story was first published by the Hamilton Tenants Solidarity Network and North Shore Counter-Info.

Tenants from the Stoney Creek Towers (50 Violet Drive, 77 Delawana Drive, 11 Grandville Avenue, and 40 Grandville Avenue) have decided to take this action in response to their landlord, CLV Group’s recent application for an Above Guideline rent Increase (AGI), on behalf of the buildings’ owner, InterRent Real Estate Investment Trust. Tenants will continue to withhold their rent until their landlord meets their demands: a total withdrawal of the AGI application and the completion of long-standing repairs to their units.

When combined with the government-permitted annual guideline rent increase (1.8% in 2018), this AGI application translates into a total rent increase of almost 10% over two years. A rent increase of this size would threaten many long-standing and low-income tenants with displacement, including immigrant tenants, elderly tenants, and tenants living on fixed incomes. With rents skyrocketing across Hamilton, many low-income tenants are being displaced from the city altogether. We will not allow that to happen in this case. We are going to fight and we are going to win!

The Hamilton Tenants Solidarity Network calls on fellow Stoney Creek Towers tenants to join the strike. We call on tenants across Hamilton to support the strikers as they stand up to a corporate landlord and protest the laws and institutions that allow for the displacement of working-class people from their communities.

Posted By

R Totale
Apr 30 2018 20:14

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  • With rents skyrocketing across Hamilton, many low-income tenants are being displaced from the city altogether. We will not allow that to happen in this case. We are going to fight and we are going to win!

    Hamilton Tenants Solidarity Network

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R Totale
May 1 2018 20:48

Now with video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XN0EdeEcWsw
And strike fund: https://www.gofundme.com/EastHamiltonRentStrike

Oh, and this:

"PHONE ZAP DETAILS
Call InterRent to support tenants in east Hamilton, Ontario who are on rent strike beginning May 1st. Demand that InterRent drop the rent increase and make necessary repairs to all units.

SUGGESTED SCRIPT
"My name is _________ and I am calling to support the Stoney Creek Towers rent strike. Drop the above guideline rent increase and make all of the necessary repairs to tenants’ units. CLV and InterRent are pushing low-income tenants out of their homes and you need to stop."

FLOOD THEIR PHONE LINES!
• Mike McGahan, CEO of CLV/InterRent: 613-569-5699 Ext 244 - mmcgahan@interrentreit.com
• Roseanne Holtman, CLV Director of Community Relations: 613-604-0618 - roseanne.holtman@clvgroup.com
• CLV Head office: 613-728-2000
• InterRent Investor Relations: 613-569-5699
• Oliver Filip, regional property manager: 905-299-1987

BACKGROUND
Tenants from the Stoney Creek Towers have decided to withhold their rent on May 1 in response to their landlord, CLV Group’s recent application for an Above Guideline rent Increase (AGI), on behalf of the buildings’ owner, InterRent Real Estate Investment Trust. Tenants will continue to withhold their rent until their landlord meets their demands: a total withdrawal of the AGI application and the completion of long-standing repairs to their units.

AGIs represent a major loophole in rent control legislation, one that large corporate landlords regularly exploit in order to pass on the costs of cosmetic upgrades (landscaping, lobby renovations, balcony replacements, painting of building exterior) to long-standing tenants--upgrades intended to beautify the building to attract higher-paying tenants.

When combined with Ontario’s inflation-adjusted annual guideline rent increase (1.8% in 2018), this AGI application translates into a total rent increase of almost 10% over two years. A rent increase of this size would threaten many long-standing and low-income tenants with displacement, including many immigrant tenants, elderly tenants, and tenants living on fixed incomes. With rents skyrocketing across Hamilton, many low-income tenants are being displaced from the city altogether.

Tenants are organizing to fight and win. You can have their backs by calling and e-mailing their landlord and property management company.

Both InterRent real estate investment trust and CLV property management company are owned by Mike McGahan, CEO. CLV acts as a sock puppet for InterRent, ensuring that InterRent can operate as an absentee slumlord."