OUR VIEW: There are much better ways to help Surrey renters

Clearly, nobody should be living in an apartment with rotten floors. But what's the best way to help these tenants?

Decrying their apartment building’s ‘deplorable’ conditions

Clearly, nobody should be paying $900 rent for an apartment with rotten floors. Or be living in an apartment with rotten floors.

It’s easy to point fingers of blame at landlords, who often deserved to be finger-pointed at, when tenants live in decrepit suites.

But sometimes tenants need to look in the mirror.

Got a bug problem? Then maybe stop hoarding stuff. Keeping a messy home sometimes invites problems, like gross carpets and damage from unreported leaks.

ACORN, which advocates for the poor, staged a protest rally Tuesday, slamming Whalley’s Bristol Estates Apartments as part of its “Central Surrey Slum Tour.”

The protestors called on the City of Surrey to take action, and for Bristol Estates’ management to immediately resolve pest, mold and structural issues which they say is causing tenants “severe heath and wellness problems.”

Notably, the city’s bylaw enforcement manager says the city has not received any recent complaints from Bristol Estates, except for stray dogs and cats, chickens being kept in apartments, and illegal dumping. We strongly doubt the apartment management is foisting poultry on its residents.

Sometimes, public protest is a necessary last resort. That said, perhaps another tack ACORN might also consider is to make sure the tenants it strives to help are made aware of where they can seek untapped help that’s available to them, and recognize their own responsibility in keeping their homes clean, rather than simply yell at landlords.

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