A person is not covered under the Residential Tenancies Act until they are officially a tenant in a building, but discrimination prevents many people from securing rental housing in the first place. Barbara Hall, the Chief Commissioner if the Ontario Housing Tribunal, issued a statement about discriminatory housing advertisements following an extensive review of sites with housing listings. The Commission found that on some rental housing sites, up to 20% of listings contained discriminatory provisions.
Many people, Hall says, are not aware of what words and clauses count as discrimination according to the Ontario Human Rights Code.
Some of the most common examples of discriminatory additions include "adult building", "must provide proof of employment" and "No ODSP (Ontario Disability Support Program)". The Commission has released a fact sheet about discriminatory housing advertisements to help potential tenants identify them, and rental housing providers to avoid making them. http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/resources/factsheets/fairads
Hall has requested the cooperation of print media and rental housing websites in ending discrimination in housing advertisements.
For the full story and more resources on discrimination in rental accommodation,
click here: http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/resources/news/fairads.
If you think you may have experienced discrimination related to rental housing, you can contact the Tenant Hotline (416-921-9494) or the Centre for Equality Rights in Accommodation (1-800-263-1139 ext. 22).