June, 2013 Update:
There are 34 high and low rise buildings in Thorncliffe Park. The conditions are particularly bad in buildings 71, 75 and 79 where TPTA focuses most of its efforts.
Currently, TPTA is working to ensure that the management Q Residential is accountable to its tenants. It is making the following demands:
No AC Charges!
Tenants are being unfairly charged $150 per AC per season. We refuse to pay! We will be taking this matter to the Landlord and Tenant Board.
No Transfer Fees!
Tenants are forced to pay anywhere between $200 to $700 if they want to change suites within a building. These fees are excessive and exploitative. They take advantage of old residents who need to stay in the same area.
Rents have been increasing every year making it harder for families to live in safe and healthy conditions. This is forcing more and more tenants to share a smaller unit so they can afford the rent.
Timely Maintenance Repairs!
There are frequent problems with leaky taps, broken kitchen cupboards, cockroaches, mice, bed bugs and more. Elevators are also often out of service. Tenants should not have to wait for over 3 weeks for the staff to take action.
Better Hydro Access!
Water is often too hot or too cold or too little. Management shuts off water at least once a month sometimes for up to 12 hours to save money. It’s time to fix the boiler system.
No Visitor Parking Fees!
Why are we being forced to pay visitor parking fees? Once again, the management’s pursuit of profits comes at the expense of tenants’ pockets!
Give Us Back Our Lockers!
Important tenant storage space is being taken away to make room for additional units.
Free Light Bulbs & Fuses!
Tenants are forced to buy replacement bulbs and fuses from the management costing up to $10.
No Smart Meters!
Tenants have to pay extra electricity charges on top of their rent. Why is the management using smart meters to keep track of how much electricity we use when the City of Toronto made them illegal in 2009?
Clean Common Areas!
Vacuuming is only done once a month. To save money, the management is only hiring 1-2 cleaners for the entire building.
There is only 1 security guard who looks after 3 buildings (71, 75 & 79) between 10 pm and 7am. For over 5 hours during the day, we have no one to turn to for concerns. Even when we call emergency numbers, we get answering machines! Conditions are especially unsafe for women and children in the underground parking garages.
Dignity and Respect!
We won’t tolerate the rude and discriminatory attitude of the staff and management anymore. We won’t beg for our dignity, we will demand it!
Summer 2012 Update
The Tower Renewal Program: A new initiative finding its way into Thorncliffe Park that is likely to have an impact on tenants.
The program seeks to to renovate many of the outdoor spaces on and around the highrises for “the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and water use, improvements in energy efficiency, and the strengthening of neighbourhoods.” How will this help tenants in their everyday struggles?
The municipal government is planning to spend very little of its money in this project. Instead it will arrange for loans to landlords, who will be in charge of leading these changes. If the landlords do not pay back these loans, the City will get them back through increases in property taxes, which, as we know, the tenants end up paying for in the form of rent increases. Is there a better way to structure the program?
Let’s ask more questions about:
How this program will actually benefit tenants?
How this program might hurt tenants in the long run?
How can tenants get and stay involved in the decision-making process?