Frequently Asked Questions
Who are you?
The creators of this site are a team of volunteers affiliated with Courage, a coalition of the independent left. We seek to meet the needs of people and planet through bold proposals that challenge normal politics — alongside real-world action and solidarity with movements.
I’m worried about my anonymity – what if this info gets out?
We’re taking extensive steps to secure your information, storing it on a separate, secure, non-public server.
If you’re still worried, we suggest using a service like burnermail.io, which provides an extra layer of anonymity.
Wait, I’m also organizing a group of people offline. Can I count them in here?
Absolutely. Without needing to input individual information, you can log your totals in this section.
What makes this different from a petition?
By asking people to commit to a consequential action (joining a rent strike) but freeing them from having to be the one to stick their neck out alone, we’re hoping to demonstrate the power of collective action – and create a real-time reflection of the power we can build together.
We’re not appealing to the powerful; we’re asking visitors to join together and become powerful.
Why are you pushing for a rent strike?
At least hundreds of thousands, and likely millions of people in Canada will not be able to pay their rent as the COVID-19 crisis continues. Estimating conservatively, at least 1.5 million households will soon be unable to pay their rent.
The Liberal government is giving billions in aid and zero-interest loans to large corporations for one reason: they have power, and they use it.
Their power is money. In this case, ours is too (in the money we can withhold). But it’s a lot more work to unify millions of people than it is to get a few hundred CEOs together. We need to unify to exercise our power.
Are there examples of rent strikes working?
Yes! History is filled with examples of rent strikes, usually provoked by extreme circumstances. And COVID-19 is definitely that.
Is this action limited to the COVID-19 crisis?
The crisis has further exposed the housing crisis in Canada. The fact that the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto is $2,300 is not a result of a pandemic. It’s the result of letting real estate speculators run the housing market for 40+ years.
Other than megaprofits for the rich and absurdly profitable big banks, there’s no reason to run housing this way.
A city like Vienna has almost two-thirds of its housing as social housing, which has given the city’s quality of life a major boost. We can have beautiful public housing. The only thing stopping us are the banks and real estate speculators who are fueling the housing crisis for profit.
So what are we going to do about the root causes of the housing crisis?
The first step is to build power. We hope this “critical mass app” will help to create an inflection point where people understand that it doesn’t have to be this way, and that we have the power to change it if we act in a unified way for common goals.
Right now, the demand —and the action to take— is cancelling rent for as long as this crisis lasts, and as long as recovery support is needed.
How can I get in touch?
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org