Alberta budget includes $27M to help Ukrainian newcomers with housing, language
The Alberta government has said it will increase funds to help those fleeing the war in Ukraine if the 2023 budget is passed.
The UCP government said it would provide up to $27.3 million to help Ukrainians access settlement, language, housing and financial assistance.
Russia launched its invasion on February 24, 2022.
Since then, about 21,600 Ukrainians have come to Alberta, said Trade, Immigration and Multiculturalism Minister Rajan Sawhney.
The recruit support agency says it’s busier than last year. Alberta expects more Ukrainians to arrive in the province in the coming months.
“The need for help outstrips the available funds,” said Troy Davis, CEO of Catholic Social Services.
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“Ukrainian communities and resettlement agencies have told us that they are in dire need of funds to assist evacuees when they arrive in Alberta,” Thorny said.
“The Government of Alberta, as a dedicated supporter of the Ukrainian people, has provided much-needed funds to ensure that Ukrainian refugees receive language and resettlement services upon arrival in Alberta. Offers.”
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The provincial budget is expected to be $7 million (from Alberta’s Department of Trade, Immigration and Multiculturalism) over three years for ongoing settlements and language services.
It will also direct $20.3 million for housing and financial assistance (from the Department of Seniors, Communities and Social Services).
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Oleksandr Danileyko, Ukrainian Consul General in Edmonton, said: “Ukraine appreciates the continued and effective support of the Government of Alberta to Ukraine and the Ukrainian people in their fight against unjust and provocative Russian aggression. I am grateful to you,” he said.
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“We are also grateful for the support of Ukrainians who have come to this state to escape the horrors of the Russian war, mostly women with children. Many of them have no relatives or friends here and no means of livelihood. very limited.”
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As of February 24, evacuees from Ukraine can apply for Alberta’s Rent Assistance Program. Previous requirements for citizenship, refugee, or immigrant status have been removed, and Ukrainians are eligible for the same social housing and rent assistance programs as other Albertans.
The 2023 budget adds $9.9 million in additional funding to the rent program for a total of $16.7 million.
“By increasing access to supports such as Rental Assistance Benefits, we are paving the way for success in the state,” said Jeremy Nixon, Minister for Seniors, Communities and Social Services.
“For those leaving Ukraine, it is important to know that our government stands in solidarity with them against the horrific war in their homeland, and by supporting those displaced in Alberta. I will show you that.”
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The 2023 Budget will also provide $3.6 million to help continue the Ukrainian Refugee Emergency Financial Assistance and Benefits Program, which began on March 28, 2022.
Extends to January 2024, removing up to 6 months benefit period. According to the state, the funds will be provided as needed, not on time.
Alberta’s budget is due to be submitted on February 28th.
Several mourning rallies were held across Alberta on Friday to mark the solemn anniversary of the Russian invasion.
Around noon, the Edmonton City Council took a moment to stand by Ukraine and Ukrainians.
Edmonton’s Ukrainian-Canadian community will hold a rally at the Alberta Legislature on Friday at 6:30 pm.
From 6pm under the Vegreville Pysanka, there will be a candlelight vigil and a short programme.
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