Cannabis – A Good-to-Know Guide for Tenants

Disponible/available in: Français (French)


Effective October 17, 2018, consumption of recreational cannabis is legal in Ontario.

This brochure is a good-to-know guide and serves as a reminder of your rights and responsibilities as an OCH tenant.

OCH encourages residents who choose to use cannabis to purchase it from government-approved sources.

Ottawa Community Housing supports a smoke-free environment and is committed to promoting safe and healthy communities and working environments

The Smoke-Free Ontario Act

Find out more information online:

Smoking Cannabis

Smoking cannabis is not allowed under OCH No-Smoking Policy.

OCH put a No-Smoking Policy in place in 2014 that does not allow smoking on any OCH properties.

Any tenants who signed a lease after January 1, 2014, signed a lease with a no-smoking clause.

  • This means tenants and their guests cannot smoke on OCH properties and in their home.

Any tenants who signed a lease before January 1, 2014, did not have a no-smoking clause.

  • This means tenants (who signed before this date) and their guests can smoke in their homes only.

Artboard 571All tenants and their guests have a responsibility to make sure that smoking does not interfere with their neighbours’ enjoyment of their home. Excessive smoke and smell can bother other tenants and generate a complaint.

Reporting and Complaint Process

phone1Any tenants can report excessive smoking to OCH 613-731-1182.

Complaints will be dealt with on a case by case basis through OCH complaint process.

Home Cultivation

    The Cannabis Legislation allows residents to have four plants per home (not four plants per person).
    1. While it is legal, there are things to consider if you choose to grow plants:


  • Ottawa Fire Services recommends using ULC – rated extension cords or power bars with surge protectors.
  • Modifications to your home’s plumbing or electrical systems to accommodate growing cannabis will not be approved.
  • Plants are allowed in your private rented premises, secured on the balcony or your backyard. Make sure to also secure your outside containers.
  • OCH encourages you to research the safest methods to grow cannabis.

Artboard 571If you choose to grow plants, you will be held responsible for any damage such as water, mold, fire damage, etc.

Medical Cannabis

cannabis_greenSome residents have medical prescriptions to use cannabis. Having a medical prescription does not necessarily mean that you will be able to smoke in your home. Accommodations for tenants with a prescription can be made on a case-by-case basis. Contact your Tenancy Support Worker to discuss the accommodation.

It’s important to remember that cannabis smoke, like cigarettes, can create second-hand smoke, which has well-documented health hazards and may aggravate certain health conditions.

Alternative Options to Smoking Cannabis

  • There are many forms of cannabis, such as edibles, ointments and oils. Cannabis doesn’t have to be smoked, and tenants are encouraged to discuss alternatives with their doctor.

Helpful Resources

Per the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA), this brochure is available in an alternate format upon request by contacting

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