Current Affairs

Gay Canadian man evicted over sexuality and it was completely legal

Meka Beresford August 12, 2017
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A gay Canadian man who had temporarily rented a room in Vancouver was forced to move out because of his sexuality.

Caleb Gardiner had found the room to rent on Craigslist as a temporary solution while he sought out a more permanent address.

Texts sent from the discriminatory renter
(Photo by Caleb Gardiner / Facebook)

He was told if he wanted anybody to stay over it would cost an extra $10 a night, a condition that did not bother Gardiner.

However, when he told the renter of the room that he would be having his boyfriend over to stay the situation quickly turned sour.

The renter, identified as Jenny, said that she could not let this happen because of religious reasons.

“When I used the word boyfriend, that’s when everything turned south,” Gardiner told BuzzFeed.

Jenny told Gardiner: “If you guys are gay, I cannot allow this to happen in my house. Pls don’t bring your boyfriend to sleep over in my house.

“If you insist to do so, I would refund you all your money & please leave tomorrow, & please find somewhere to stay.

“Sorry I am very firm about this matter.

“I am Christian, it’s totally against my God’s will. I don’t want this thing in my house at all.”

Gardiner explained that both he and his boyfriend were “outraged” by the messages and their first port of call was a lawyer.

However, they quickly came to realise that Jenny’s actions were not actually illegal or classed as discrimination because of a loophole in the law.

It is illegal to discriminate against tenant’s renting out an entire property but if the person is renting out shared space then it is not.

According to Section 10 of BC’s Human Rights Code, if “sleeping, bathroom or cooking facilities” are shared, renters can discriminate however they wish.

Texts sent from the discriminatory renter
(Photo by Caleb Gardiner / Facebook)

Gardiner ultimately gave up his battle and moved out the next day and requested a full refund from Jenny.

He shared the screenshots on Facebook where people were just as outraged.

Many tried to offer Gardiner legal advice.

“Most people have been shocked and want to say it’s illegal,” he explained.

However, Robyn Durling, communications director for the BC Human Rights Clinic, explained that the law has a loophole for a reason.

“It’s intended to say that yes, in certain circumstances when people are living in close proximity, there may be a need to discriminate,” Durling said.

Gardiner added that he was surprised by the law because of the great advances in equality in Vancouver.

“I think it was presumed by people that given marriage equality in Vancouver for more than 10 years now that this sort of thing wouldn’t be legal,” he said.

Related topics: Americas, boyfriend, Canada, Canada, Discrimination, Gay, LGBT, Vancouver

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