February 28, 2024 10:24 am

Canadians spent $769 million to accommodate refugees and illegal immigrants this year

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Illegal immigrants and refugee applicants billed taxpayers a pretty penny this year for food and hotel accommodations. Courtesy of the Department of Immigration, Canadians are $769 million in the red.

“There are two mechanisms of funding,” clarified Nathalie Manseau, chief financial officer for Immigration Canada. In testimony to the Senate national finance committee, she said the $769 million expenditure represented their combined cost.

“The first one is the interim lodging sites which are the hotels,” said Manseau. “The anticipated expenditure for this fiscal year is $557 million.”

Lengths of hotel stays ranged “from a few weeks to a few months,” said another official.

The other side of the equation is the interim housing assistance program, totaling $212 million, as reported by Blacklock’s Reporter.

“The way the program works is different municipalities will submit a request for reimbursement and the department will assess the request and provide reimbursement up to $212 million,” said Manseau. About half the money, “nearly $100 million specifically,” was to reimburse municipalities in the Greater Toronto Area, she said. 

However, the chief financial officer did not detail how many refugee applicants and illegal immigrants Canada accommodated at $769 million — the most comprehensive figure disclosed to date.

In a May 4 Inquiry Of Ministry tabled in the House of Commons, room and board for illegal immigrants near a single Québec border crossing cost $1,220 per person.

Of the 105,315 illegal immigrants who entered Canada at Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Québec via Roxham Road, their meals and accommodation cost $127.5 million over a five-year period.

The Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) in a 2018 report Irregular Migration Across Canada’s Southern Border pegged federal costs for illegal immigration averaged from $14,321 to $33,700 depending on lengthy appeals to remain in the country. 

“Per migrant costs are projected to rise over time,” wrote analysts. “This is largely due to longer projected wait times for migrants to complete the entire asylum claim process.”

“Where are you putting these people?” asked Senator Larry Smith. “Leases with the different hotels,” replied Manseau.

According to the Inquiry, the federal government booked rooms for illegal immigrants as far west as Surrey, B.C. to St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. But hit hardest are several municipalities in Québec, including Laval and Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle.



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Original Source: Canadians spent $769 million to accommodate refugees and illegal immigrants this year

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