Yukon landlords launch "empathy" campaign
WHITEHORSE - Rent control would increase hardship for rich people
An image from the Yukon Federation of Landlords "Beyond the Money" campaign.
On Monday afternoon, the Yukon Federation of Landlords (YFL) launched a territory-wide public awareness campaign "Beyond the Money" that asks people to show greater empathy for landlords.
Kyle Crawford, the executive director of the YFL, says that the goal of the campaign is to push back against a rising demand for rent control in the territory.
"Beyond the Money is about increasing public awareness of the problems associated with wealth" Crawford said "specifically in the case of landlords."
"Everyone knows about the poverty trap but most people have never even heard about the wealth trap. Landlords in the Yukon are disproportionately affected by the wealth trap and people need to understand what that means on a human-to-human level."
According to the YFL's press release, Yukon's landlords are amongst the territory's richest residents and are therefore exposed to greater hardship than people with less money.
These landlords, the YFL claims, have become accustomed to a certain quality of life and keeping up with that life often leads to high levels of stress.
"Imagine telling your husband he can't get a new snowmobile this year" Crawford explained "or telling your teenage daughter or son that they can't get a new car once they graduate high school" .
"Some of our members have been driven to tears at the idea that rent control could mean less expensive holidays. Others are terrified by the idea of their kids having to use a public bus some day. This is the harsh truth of the wealth trap."
Types of landlords
According to the Yukon Residential Landlords Association, its members "own and manage residential rental properties that range from one to several hundred units, and include apartments, houses, and secondary suites."
Despite the vast gap between the smallest and biggest landlords in the territory, Yukon Party and Liberal MLAs have tried to lump all landlords into one to support their argument that any type of rent control would cause a burden for landlords across the board.
The suggestion by the two parties is that someone who is renting out a room in their home to help pay utility bills is the same as someone renting out their entire mobile home park, shopping mall or apartment complex.
Yukon journalist Lori Fox, known for ruffling feathers with her investigative articles, reported in December 2020 on the inability of the Liberals and Yukon Party to truly understand poverty.
Both parties on December 9, 2020, voted down a motion to temporarily freeze rent for tenants suffering as a result of the pandemic.
Fox highlighted how the Yukon's Residential and Landlord Tenant Act allows landlords to increase rent once a year "literally as much as they want, without making improvements to the housing or even stipulating a reason."
By contrast, other places like BC, Ontario and Québec limit annual rent increases based, not just on percentages, but also on whether or not the landlord made an improvement to the property that actually warrants an increase.
"Beyond the Money" depicts landlords in distress over the impact of rent control on personal wealth.
Editors' note: This story was published in the 'Satire' section of our website and has elements of truth as per the links provided. Whitewash News started out in March 2020 as a satirical news and parody outlet. In response to readership ideas and demand, starting November 2020, we now also publish factual news stories to the 'Real news' section of our website.