For Immediate Release
July 27 2020
Sudden mass evictions shock residents of supportive housing building in Maple Ridge with the end of BC’s eviction moratorium
UNCEDED KATZIE & KWANTLEN TERRITORY (Maple Ridge): At noon on July 27th, three residents of one of the Coast Mental Health-run supportive housing buildings in Maple Ridge were surprised with sheriffs at their doors and a moving truck outside.
Bardonnex explained that the eviction took her by surprise. “The staff never told us they were going to evict us today. I never got a notice on my door, no verbal notice, nothing,” she said.
The timing, to Bardonnex, felt cruel and harmful. “Today is the anniversary of my daughter’s passing. I don’t know why they’re doing this today,” she said.
Even worse, Bardonnex said, “I don’t even have a tent. I don’t have anywhere to go. I don’t have anywhere to store my belongings.”
Although evicting someone at the end of the eviction moratorium is immoral and wrong, it is not illegal. The BC Government is not requiring landlords to communicate formally about the timeline of their evictions.
The three residents of the Coast Mental Health-operated supportive housing, including Eva Bardonnex, received eviction notices during the BC’s pandemic moratorium on evictions. Eva received an eviction notice on April 28th.
The agent for the non-profit housing operator told the RTB adjudicator that they would work with Eva to find new housing and would not evict her suddenly.
Eva says, “The staff here never helped me find a place to live. They never told me I have to get out today. Why are ‘supportive housing’ providers throwing a woman out into the streets?”
Eva Bardonnex barricaded herself in her room, but was unable to keep the sheriffs out.
Eva says, “The staff was helping them kick the door in. I was yelling at them to get the manager. And then a sheriff climbed in through my window and started throwing my stuff around, breaking things, throwing my stuff out the window.”
Bardonnex was in tears. She said, “I’ve got nowhere to go. I don’t have anywhere to go. All my things are on the sidewalk.”
She said, “At the very least they could have told us a day ahead of time that they were going to send the sheriffs. Why give us no warning?” Bardonnex, who is also a member of Red Braid Alliance for Decolonial Socialism, said the non-profit housing provider’s eviction of her and two others in her building shows that the end of the BC government’s eviction moratorium is a disaster for low-income tenants. “We already have no rights in supportive housing. The staff treat us like patients, not tenants. Now they’re just throwing us out in the street without warning,” Bardonnex said.
Bardonnex and the Red Braid Alliance are calling for the Province to cancel all evictions, whether for infractions of arbitrary rules in so-called supportive housing buildings, or for non-payment or short-payment of rent. This demand is made especially urgent because of the end of the BC government’s moratorium on evictions, which ended at the end of June for all evictions besides those for non-payment of rent, and which is set to end on September 1st for evictions for non- or incomplete payment of rents.