Saskatchewan says refugee influx straining resources

REGINA -- Saskatchewan Immigration Minister Jeremy Harrison says the arrival of nearly 600 Syrian refugees over the last couple of months is straining resources.

See Full Article

Harrison says the province has been working hard with Ottawa, municipal governments and settlement agencies to make sure that refugees are set up to succeed. But he says that has "put some very real stress" on the system.

"We're seeing areas where our resources are being taxed," Harrison said Thursday at the legislature.

"We want to make sure that those (who) arrive, are here and are going to be successful here."

Harrison says some of the biggest demand is around English language training. There are a limited number of Arabic speakers who are able to work with newcomers, he said.

"We know one of the most significant determinants of success for new arrivals is language," he said.

"That's kind of your greatest determinant of your ability to attach to the labour market, to get a job. This one chokepoint particularly (is)where ... we're going to need additional resources for language training and we've communicated that with the government of Canada."

Saskatchewan is expected to take in a total of 850 refugees by the end of February.

Some cities, including Vancouver and Ottawa, are taking a break from accepting any more government-assisted Syrian refugees as settlement agencies try to work through housing issues. A surge of arrivals in the last month has filled temporary housing to capacity and settlement groups say they need time to move people into permanent homes before they can accept any new cases.

In Prince Albert, Sask., the government said the YWCA asked for a pause this week so that it could get caught up on moving people out of hotels and into apartments.

The pause applies to government-assisted refugees, those whose costs are covered entirely by the federal government. Upon arrival in Canada, they are sent to one of 36 cities that have resettlement agreements with the government.

Finding permanent places for refugees to live has been going well in Saskatchewan, said Harrison.

"We've been successful there, but in terms of speeding up the process, that's not something we're asking for right now."



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Canada to give asylum to 1,200 primarily Yazidi refugees by year end

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA - The Trudeau government is poised to announce today that Canada has given safe haven to almost 400 Yazidi refugees and other survivors of Islamist extremists in the last four months and will take in about 800 more by the end of the year. Source
  • Canada isn't about to throw Mexico under the bus, foreign ministers say

    Canada News CBC News
    It might be too early to say where the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement will lead, but the foreign ministers of Canada and Mexico already agree on one thing: Mexico will not be thrown under the bus. Source
  • Canadians warn against Trump pressure to change strategy for fighting ISIS

    Canada News CBC News
    Two senior Canadian generals have defended the current strategy for defeating ISIS in Iraq and Syria, which U.S. officials have put under review following scathing criticism by U.S. President Donald Trump. U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis was in Iraq this week after Trump gave the retired marine general until the end of the month to come up with a plan for speeding up the campaign. Source
  • Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe praises Donald Trump’s ’America First’ policy

    World News Toronto Sun
    HARARE, Zimbabwe — U.S. President Donald Trump’s “America First” policy has an admirer in Zimbabwe’s longtime president, who says the policy resonates with his own thinking. President Robert Mugabe, who turned 93 on Tuesday and is the world’s oldest head of state, spoke in a birthday interview with state-run media. Source
  • Mar-a-Lago: Inside Trump’s 'winter White House'

    World News CTV News
    Donald Trump’s “winter White House,” also known as Mar-a-Lago, is regularly making headlines as the U.S. president takes regular weekend retreats at the exclusive Florida club property, even hosting a foreign leader and holding an impromptu briefing in plain sight. Source
  • Accused Quebec City mosque shooter's case to resume March 30

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    QUEBEC — The case of the man charged with murder in last month’s mosque shootings in Quebec City will resume March 30. Alexandre Bissonnette, 27, appeared in court on Tuesday as the Crown handed over evidence to the defence lawyer. Source
  • Bodyboarder killed in shark attack off Reunion Island

    World News Toronto Sun
    A French bodyboarder bled to death on an Indian Ocean beach after he was attacked by a shark early Tuesday. And vandalized signs — chopped off at the top — warning of the dangerous shark-filled waters off Reunion Island could have saved him, officials say. Source
  • Groundbreaking family: Two women, one boy and a legal precedent

    Canada News CTV News
    Two Ottawa women have set a precedent by becoming legally recognized co-mothers of a boy, even though they are not in a romantic relationship. Lynda Collins was granted what’s known as a declaration of parentage after years of co-parenting seven-year-old Elaan, the biological son of her good friend Natasha Bakht. Source
  • Edmonton dentist failed to provide basic care to girl left in coma, $26.5M lawsuit claims

    Canada News CBC News
    An Edmonton dentist and his staff failed to provide basic care to a young girl who stopped breathing during an office visit in September, according to statement of claim filed this month. Amber Athwal's family is suing Dr. Source
  • Police: N.Y. man with chainsaw cuts through door, hurts boss

    World News CTV News
    LYONS FALLS, N.Y. - State police say a 29-year-old man used a chainsaw to cut through a door at his boss's upstate New York home, causing severe injuries to the employer's hand. Troopers say Kyle Poore, of Lyons Falls, used a running chainsaw late Sunday night to cut through a bedroom door at his employer's Lewis County home, located 55 miles northeast of Syracuse. Source