After refugees sleep on the streets, Ottawa announces funding for housing – National

The federal government on Tuesday announced additional housing assistance for asylum seekers in Canada, weeks after reports that asylum seekers had to sleep on the streets of Toronto due to lack of shelter.

Immigration Minister Sean Fraser, making the announcement in Moncton, Co. Noble, said the assistance will come through a one-time injection of approximately $212 million into the Temporary Housing Assistance Program (IHAP) until March 31, 2024. Said it would be extended. .

“This includes approximately $97 million in new funding for the City of Toronto. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) said in a release on Tuesday.

This is in addition to $700 million previously provided under the program, which includes more than $215 million to the City of Toronto, he added.

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“Canada will continue to support the world’s most vulnerable people who seek our protection. We have committed additional funding to ensure that we have the ability to cover with,” Fraser said in a statement.

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland added, “There is no better partner for the city of Toronto than the federal government.”

“Today’s funding announcement builds on our track record of partnering with local governments, including Toronto, to ensure that those seeking refuge and safety in Canada receive the assistance they deserve,” she said in a statement.

The city of Toronto’s shelters were reportedly full last week, and the city recently changed its policy on asylum seekers to refer them to the federal government rather than pay for shelter space.

As a result, people arriving on the streets of Toronto from Pearson International Airport were forced to wait in the scorching sun and rain.

More than 35 percent of the 9,000 people who occupy space in Toronto’s shelter system are refugees, according to Shelter Support Housing Administration (SSHA).

Obtaining federal funding to house them is a challenge for city leaders.

Click to play video: “Refugee Advocacy Groups Call on Federal Government for Immediate Funding to Address Toronto Shelter Crisis”

Refugee advocacy groups urge federal government for immediate funding to address Toronto shelter crisis

Former Mayor John Torrey and Deputy Mayor Jennifer McKelvey have spent months trying together to raise money from Ottawa to house asylum seekers, but both have failed. The city’s new mayor, Olivia Chow, has promised success that her predecessor failed to achieve.

© 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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