Tenants at 2089 & 2099 Lawrence Ave W take action!
Posted November 7, 2022
Toronto ACORN held a tenant speakout with tenants of 2089 and 2099 Lawrence Ave W on Saturday, November 5th. Tenants at both buildings are absolutely fed up with their landlord, Hersz Properties, who keeps raising the rent but isn’t doing vital repairs in the building.
The tenant speakout went awesome! Tenants came out to speak out outside their building, with just under 50 people coming through to support the cause. They shared their stories of being mistreated by the landlord in both English and Somali, with other tenants translating for the crowd.
They have received several Above Guideline Rent Increases (AGIs) over the years, while the building continues to fall into disrepair. The carpets and common areas are rarely cleaned, and it is even worse inside people’s units. Tenants are furious about the windows, which are poorly insulated, meaning that it gets incredibly cold during the winter months. There is consistent negligence of in-unit repairs for tenants, including pest issues, broken appliances, worn out flooring, and cracked walls.
On November 5th, tenants spoke out about their concerns. Their chants and stories inspired other tenants to come downstairs after hearing the growing crowd from their balconies.
Hersz Properties definitely noticed, as the superintendent came down to complain about the crowd outside. Even better, the landlord posted signs in the lobby saying that they are going to address some complaints about the common areas, especially the poorly maintained carpeting in the hallways. It is clear that they are intimidated by the growing movement at 2089 & 2099 Lawrence Ave W and that we have a ton of traction for future actions.
This is just a first step, and is not the end of the fight for justice for tenants at these buildings. Tenants are excited about the prospect of fighting for change and have already begun planning next steps to keep the pressure on.
This is a systemic issue across Toronto – landlords consistently neglect repairs in buildings and raise the rent through unfair above guideline increases. These issues target low-income families and displace people from their homes and communities. ACORN is constantly fighting for strong rent control and strong tenant protections for healthy homes. We look forward to continuing this vital work with tenants at 2089 & 2099 Lawrence Ave W and across Toronto. If you are worried about AGIs or neglected repairs at your building – get in touch with ACORN! Let’s get organized and fight back!