Caleb Gardiner
2 min read

Questions are being raised about Canada’s human rights following a Vancouver local being left shocked and concerned following a run-in with a homophobic landlord advertising on Craigslist.

Caleb Gardiner, who had recently returned to Vancouver and was in need of tempory accommodation while searching for a flat, took to Craigslist finding and booking an ideal apartment, with only one condition, that if anyone was to stay the night, a $10 surcharge would apply.

Shortly after moving in and paying for the apartment, Gardiner enquired to his landlord of the best way to pay the $10 extra per night when his boyfriend stays over on the odd occasion.

Caleb Gardiner
Caleb Gardiner in his onesie

“Sorry! If you guys are gay, I cannot allow this happen in my house,” the text message from the landlord read.

“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, & find somewhere to stay. Sorry, I am very firm about this matter. I am a Christian, it’s totally against my God’s will. I don’t want this thing in my house at all.”

Gardiner was shocked to find that in most cases such discrimination was, in fact, legal under British Columbian law, with section 10 of BC’s Human Rights Code saying that if “sleeping, bathroom or cooking facilities” are shared, renters can discriminate.

Gardiner, however, was not prepared to simply give up, highlighting to the British Columbia Human Rights Clinic that the law excludes situations in which accommodation a “shared space,” which in fact, this particular apartment was.

British Columbia Human Rights ClinicHowever, Robyn Durling who is the communications director for the British Columbia Human Rights Clinic justified Gardiners’ eviction by claiming that the law allows “in certain circumstances when people are living in close proximity, there may be a need to discriminate.”

Gardiner who eventually ended up getting the refund and finding another place to stay, highlights that many people would assume such discrimination would not be legal, “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.”

Last Updated on Aug 14, 2017

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