Home Takeovers of Vulnerable Tenants
In January of 2013, Crime Prevention Ottawa released a report entitled
“Cuckooing”: Unit Takeovers of Vulnerable Individuals. This report revealed that
very little research has been conducted on the subject of home takeovers and
most has come from homelessness groups from the United Kingdom.
Furthermore, while anecdotal evidence affirms home takeovers occur in
Ottawa the extent and nature of the problem is unclear. Utilizing both survey
and interview research of Ottawa-based frontline workers, the purpose of this
project is to provide an overview of the issue in Ottawa including prevention
and intervention measures.
A “home takeover” is defined as a situation in which a legitimate tenant or
home owner finds themselves unsafe, physically, financially or psychologically,
because of the presence of people in their home that they may or may not be
able to remove. These situations can range in severity from theft to serious
assault; involve a range of relationships from a family relationship to drug
dealing; take advantage of the legitimate tenant’s vulnerabilities (IE. addiction,
isolation, and capacity limitations associated with developmental delay or poor
health); and always render the legitimate tenant or homeowner at risk of losing
their home and uncomfortable in their own home.
See complete report: Home Takeovers of Vulnerable Tenants – final