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Federal government pledges more money to help with refugee housing crisis

Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Marc Miller speaks to media in Montreal on Monday, Jan. 22, 2024. (Christinne Muschi/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Marc Miller speaks to media in Montreal on Monday, Jan. 22, 2024. (Christinne Muschi/The Canadian Press - image credit)

The federal government is allocating more money to help house a rising number of asylum seekers in Canada.

Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Marc Miller announced Wednesday that more than $362 million is being allocated to the provinces and cities struggling to cope with a rising number of refugee claimants.

The money falls under the federal government's Interim Housing Assistance Program. Miller said $100 million of the new money will be earmarked for the province of Quebec.

He said more details of how the funding will be allocated will be revealed in the coming days.

The new funding comes after premiers and mayors called for more federal help.

Quebec Premier Francois Legault wrote a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau earlier this month saying the growing number of asylum seekers was pushing government services to their breaking point.

He asked the federal government to slow the flow of asylum seekers and to cover the cost of providing services to those already in Quebec.

Toronto Mayor Olivia Chow has also asked for more federal money to help the city house asylum seekers. Miller said Wednesday the City of Toronto would be getting a "significant amount" of the funding, but he did not divulge an exact number.

More to come ...