Advertisement

Montreal seniors home residents launch legal battle against building owner

Click to play video: 'Seniors from Montreal’s Mont-Carmel private residence go to court to save home'
Seniors from Montreal’s Mont-Carmel private residence go to court to save home
A group of seniors from the Mont-Carmel Residence in Montreal are turning to the Quebec Superior Court to save their home. The building's new owner had plans to change the vocation of the home, cutting the nursing care, reception and beauty salon. But as Olivia O'Malley reports, the seniors are now taking legal action. – Jul 22, 2022

When Suzanne Loiselle received a letter in January informing her that rent at her private seniors home in Montreal would be rising and services would be cut, she vowed to fight the new owner’s decision.

On Friday she and dozens of fellow residents took the first step in their fight to the Superior Court of Quebec to defend the rights of the 100 remaining tenants at Mont-Carmel Residence.

Read more: Advocates sound alarm over closure of private Montreal seniors’ residences

Read next: Nestle to chop, slice and freeze sales of Delissio, Lean Cuisine in Canada

The group is asking for services including 24-7 nursing care, around-the-clock reception and a beauty salon to continue until their appeal is heard on Sept. 19.

These services at the residence located on René-Lévesque Boulevard East are expected to end on Aug. 1, so while their fees will be rising by three per cent, they’ll actually be receiving reduced care.

Story continues below advertisement

“The most important thing is the health and security of these people and that’s what we’re asking the court to guarantee at least until we settle these more complicated legal questions,” said Manuel Johnson, lawyer for the Mont-Carmel residents.

Click to play video: 'Scathing report on Quebec’s long-term care COVID-19 response has advocates hoping for change across Canada'
Scathing report on Quebec’s long-term care COVID-19 response has advocates hoping for change across Canada

There was standing room only in the Montreal court room Friday, as more than 50 elderly residents and supporters listened to both sides present their arguments.

Read more: Montreal seniors fear new building owner is pushing them out of their homes

Read next: ‘Dances with Wolves’ actor arrested, accused of running sex cult, abusing young girls

The day in court concluded without a decision, but Loiselle still left the court room with a smile. She said she has a good feeling that the judge understands the social context of the matter.

“At a certain moment I felt he understand our situation and our fight for our rights and the kind of injustice going on,” she told Global News.

Story continues below advertisement

The group’s lawyer said the day went well.

“We were able to explain it really is an urgency to protect the scrutiny and the milieu de vie of these residents,” said Johnson.

Quebec judge Sylvain Lussier says he recognizes the urgency of the case. His decision is expected before the Aug. 1 deadline.

Global news spoke with the lawyers representing the residence owner at the courthouse but they declined to comment.

Sponsored content