Skip to main content

Dr. Eileen De Villa, Toronto’s chief medical officer of health, attends a news conference in Toronto, on Jan. 27, 2020.Chris Young/The Canadian Press

A Toronto legal clinic has asked the city’s top doctor to suspend residential evictions during the pandemic.

The letter from Downtown Legal Services says ongoing evictions during the second wave of COVID-19 are a public health risk.

Ontario’s government has not yet taken action on an Opposition motion supporting a freeze on evictions.

Lawyer Benjamin Ries writes that Dr. Eileen de Villa has “legal authority and responsibility” to take the measure.

Ries also wrote to Dr. David Williams requesting a provincial order that restricts enforcement of evictions.

Bryan Doherty, a tenant organizer with Keep Your Rent Toronto, says suspending evictions during the pandemic doesn’t go far enough.

Sign up for the Coronavirus Update newsletter to read the day’s essential coronavirus news, features and explainers written by Globe reporters and editors.