Low-income Chinatown complex residents face rent hike

Advocates for low-income Calgarians say people living in a Chinatown highrise have slipped through the cracks of a cumbersome and confusing system.

Residents of downtown Calgary highrise already paying too much, says advocate

Advocates for low-income Calgarians say people living in a Chinatown highrise have slipped through the cracks of a cumbersome and confusing system. 2:41

Advocates for low-income Calgarians say people living in a Chinatown highrise have slipped through the cracks of a cumbersome and confusing system.

Bowside Manor is subsidized by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

Advocates for residents of Bowside Manor, shown in the screenshot above, say the building should not be charging its low-income residents more than 30 per cent of their incomes. (Google Maps)

Advocates say the building should not be charging low-income residents more than 30 per cent of their income but many are paying more, and now they are facing a rent hike in the new year.

"There's no regulation that can protect the vulnerable seniors who are very low income and have really a lot of barriers," said Liza Chan with the Calgary Chinese Elderly Citizens' Association.

"They don't have the language, they don't know the system well, they have [nowhere] to go."

The CMHC says Bowside Manor isn't breaking any of its rules, and the province says its 30 per cent cap doesn't apply because it doesn't fund the building.

Liberal MLA Kent Hehr has called on the provincial government to step in and help the residents.

He says one option is for the province to supplement rent for the building's low-income tenants.

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