Victoria animal rights activists want a more pet inclusive B.C. Residential Tenancy Act.
West Coast Campaign Officer for the Animal Protection Party of Canada, Jordan Reichert says his group has joined forces with Pets Okay B.C. to make ending the current ‘no pet’s’ policy for rentals a provincial election issue.
Reichert says the actions of a few pet owners have created an unfair situation for the majority, adding more inclusive legislation is “long overdue.”
“There’s no excuse to continue with archaic policies that we currently have.”
Currently, B.C. landlords can dictate the size, breed, and number of pets a renter can have.
Reichert says the act’s broad language should be changed in order to target select problem cases.
“There are reasonable circumstances under which somebody can be asked to remove their pets or to leave.”
LISTEN: Jordan Rikert explains why renters should be allowed pets
In Ontario, renters have the right to own pets as long as the landowner doesn’t have a specific reason an animal shouldn’t be in the home such as aggression or allergies.
“We just want more individualized process rather than a broad stroke process that really is discriminatory to people with animals and their family.”
Reichert says people with pets don’t cause more damage than those without.
“There’s definitely a misperception based on anecdotal evidence that pets cause a lot of damage on units.”
Animal Protection Party of Canada currently has about 20,000 signatures on their online petition.
Reichert says they hope to present a government recognized petition to the legislature before this spring’s election.