TORONTO – NDP MPPs Kristyn Wong-Tam (Toronto Centre) and Jessica Bell (University–Rosedale) called on Doug Ford to protect Ontarians' access to justice by implementing reforms before the Ombudsman Report into Landlord Tenant Board (LTB) delays is released.
“Ontarians need to be ready to fight like hell for access to justice. The LTB has been plagued by delays for years, with a backlog that has doubled since Doug Ford took office," Wong-Tam said at a press conference they and Bell held Thursday with Shawn Hsiao, a Toronto rooming house tenant who has been waiting for an LTB hearing since 2019.
"Ford is failing in his duty to provide fast and fair access to justice for tenants. He has underfunded tribunals, cut legal aid funding, and made appointments of Conservative donors and friends who have questionable credentials.”
Since 2020, Ontario’s Ombudsman has been investigating delays at the LTB, with a report expected in the coming months.
"The LTB's backlog of over 32,8000 cases is hurting Ontarians," said Bell. "It takes months, sometimes years, for an Ontarian to get a hearing date at the LTB. In the meantime, some tenants are forced to live in squalid conditions, face daily harassment from a landlord, or are illegally evicted - all because the LTB is failing to do its job.”
"People deserve quick access to justice," Wong-Tam stressed. "Doug Ford must commit to fixing the delays at the LTB now, rather than waiting months for the Ombudsman's report."
Shawn Hsiao, rooming house tenant
“If no one is enforcing the law, the law is meaningless. With over three years of delay, the legal system is failing us. The purpose of the LTB should be to protect Ontarians. Many tenants like myself are deprived of their rights as the delays continue.”
Quick Facts from Tribunal Watch Ontario:
- 32,800 backlogged cases at the LTB
- 16,204 backlogged cases at the Auto Accidents Benefits License Appeal Tribunal of Ontario
- 9,753 backlogged cases at the Social Benefits Tribunal of Ontario (SBT)
- 8,979 backlogged cases at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (HRTO)