Toronto to accept 80 per cent of Ontario's privately-sponsored refugees
Mjdi Mnaahe, his wife Wessam and their sons Tamim, 6, Saif, 4 and Mohammad, 1, (left to right) sit in their apartment Monday, November 30, 2015 in Irbid, Jordan. The Syrian refugee family is waiting for approval to immigrate to Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Chris Herhalt, CP24.com
Published Tuesday, December 1, 2015 7:37AM EST
More than 80 per cent of the 3,318 privately-sponsored refugees destined for Ontario will settle inside the City of Toronto, while municipalities in the GTA will accept six per cent, according to federal government data.
A backgrounder provided by Citizenship and Immigration Canada on Nov. 29 says that Toronto will accept 2,602 privately-sponsored refugees, with most of them heading to the neighbourhoods of downtown and Willowdale.
The municipalities of the GTA are set to see 183 privately-sponsored refugees arrive, including 68 destined for Mississauga, 15 to Markham, 18 to Brampton and 60 to Vaughan.
All but 20 of the these individuals had not yet arrived in the country as of Nov. 29, with eight arriving in downtown Toronto, seven in Oakville and five in Vaughan between Nov. 4 and Nov. 29. Applications for the rest are still being processed, the federal government says.
Those who sponsor refugees privately are usually expected to provide for basic needs such as shelter, clothing, food and incidentals for a period of a year, and help them find employment.
The numbers do not include any government-sponsored refugees, who have their accommodation and living costs paid for directly by the federal government instead of sponsoring families, groups or non-profit organizations.
Yesterday, Ontario Health Minister Eric Hoskins said Ontario will accept a total of 4,000 refugees by the end of early 2016, meaning less than 700 federally-sponsored refugees are likely on their way.
The federal Liberals say they will settle 10,000 Syrian refugees in the country by Dec. 31, and another 15,000 more by Feb. 2016. It’s estimated the effort will cost the federal government $678 million over five years.