People who owe the Northwest Territories Housing Corporation money won't face evictions this winter.

The minister responsible for the corporation, Robert C. McLeod, announced a temporary moratorium on evictions Wednesday afternoon in the legislative assembly.

McLeod said the grace period will be in place until April.

"I am hopeful that tenants will see this as a real opportunity to address their arrears instead of worrying about being evicted this winter. This moratorium should not be looked at as an opportunity for tenants to stop paying their rent or paying their arrears," he said.

McLeod said this will only apply to people who are in arrears, and those people should work with local housing organizations to find solutions to keep their tenancies.

He added the housing corporation will continue to ask for rent from people who aren't paying or entering into a payment plan.

McLeod said people who damage units or violate leases in other ways can still be evicted.