PE Ledger

Canada is struggling to fulfil its 2021 refugee target

Global travel patterns have been “upended” by the pandemic, according to the IRCC.

According to figures obtained by News, Canada is far from fulfilling its target of accepting 81,000 refugees by the ending of 2021.

On Oct. 31, according to figures published by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), the department was nearly halfway to meeting its refugee intake goal.

Canada had admitted more than 7,800 government-assisted refugees as of that date, far less than the federal government’s objective of 12,500. Only 4,500 privately sponsored immigrants were accepted in Canada; the aim for privately sponsored refugees was 22,500.

More than 32,000 refugees qualified as “protected individuals” – those who apply for asylum after entering the country — according to the IRCC, compared to a target of 45,000.

Global migration “has been upended by the epidemic, and the entire resettlement system is functioning at decreased capacity,” according to an IRCC statement to the media.

It said that refugees are now subjected to stricter travel restrictions in their home countries, making it more difficult for them to leave, while “international partners” such as the International Organization for Migration and the UN Refugee Agency lost time due to pandemic-related shutdowns.

“In this time of upheaval, we continue to live up to our dedication, reputation, and obligation by helping the world’s most vulnerable find refuge,” the IRCC said, noting that it had assisted in the resettlement of about a third of the world’s refugee population by 2020.

Precarious lives

The long wait has been years of worry and uncertainty for Bashar Jazmati, who has been waiting for authorization to bring himself and his family to Canada as refugees since 2019.

He made it to Kuwait in 2015, escaping Syria’s daily street violence; his family joined him in 2017. In 2015, he detailed what it was like to try to raise a little child in the midst of a civil conflict, including his daily stroll with his toddler daughter, which was disrupted by gunshots.

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