NDP leader Andrea Horwath is calling on the Ontario government to help tenants who can’t pay rent during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Horwath says in a statement that her party wants Premier Doug Ford to provide direct financial support to households so they can make rent and make it illegal to evict a tenant during the public health crisis.

There is currently an effective ban on evictions in Ontario as the Landlord and Tenant Board has suspended all hearings for the duration of the novel coronavirus outbreak.

As rent comes due on April 1, landlord and tenant associations across Canada have been calling for some kind of relief package from provincial, territorial and federal governments.

An unprecedented number of people have been laid off across the country as governments have forced non-essential businesses to close over the past week.

In a news conference Thursday, Ford urged anyone who can pay rent to do so, while promising those who can’t that they will not be evicted.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 27, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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