October 17th, 2017

Bill sets clear guidelines to protect tenants and stop rapidly increasing rents

NDP legislation introduced on International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Halifax – NDP Community Services spokesperson Susan Leblanc will introduce legislation today, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, that would introduce rent control rules on residential units in Nova Scotia.

“Rent control is one way we can address inadequate incomes in our province right now,” said Leblanc. “With one in four people in HRM spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent, we know rental increases are a burden on families.”

Yearly rent increases are difficult for renters to manage, especially for those whose budgets are already stretched to the limit.

“It was basically taking healthy food out of my child’s month,” said Chantelle Kaiser, a single mother who saw her rent increase by $40 a month this year. “When my rent went up each year, I had to make choices about where that money would come from.”

Rent control was the norm in Nova Scotia until 1993. The Liberal government at the time eliminated rent control through an Order in Council. If passed, this legislation would restrict rent increases to 0.8 per cent in the first year and would keep yearly increases to a maximum of 2.5 per cent.

“We know we need more social housing, supportive housing, and co-op options,” said Leblanc. “But with rents increasing almost 50 percent in the last 15 years, rent control would at least start us moving in the right direction.”

The NDP Caucus will also introduce the Social Inclusion Act today requiring the government to set targets for poverty reduction and elimination in Nova Scotia.

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