Premier Doug Ford and Mayor Olivia Chow released a joint statement this morning, calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's federal government to fix a refugee and asylum crisis it caused by providing more funding to not only Toronto, but other parts of the province as well.
The statement comes a day after the feds announced a one-time injection of $212 million for the Interim Housing Assistance Program, which included nearly $100 million for Toronto to provide housing for refugees. The joint release from the premier and mayor calls it a "stop-gap."
For the last several weeks, dozens of African asylum seekers were sleeping outside of a Toronto homeless shelter due to lack of space at the facility. They are now residing at a North York church, off the streets downtown, after the media pressured all levels of government for them to be housed.
"We are calling on the federal government to build on its stop-gap funding by fully funding the support needed to shelter and care for these refugees and asylum seekers in the city," the statement from the two leaders says, as reported by the Toronto Star.
Last week, Chow publicly called for $160 million in to deal with the immigration crisis caused by the Trudeau Liberals' intake of record numbers of immigrants. She also acknowledged that out of the 9,000 shelter spaces available in the city, 35% are already used by refugees.
"While the problem is most extreme in Toronto, it is a challenge facing communities across Ontario. We need the federal government to deliver long-term province-wide solutions," the statement continued.
The premier and mayor finished by asking for tens of millions more in funding to address the issue:
Ontario and Toronto are each providing $6.67 million to support another $1,350 individuals and families in the city. Historically, the federal government contributes two-thirds of the cost of this program. To meet this commitment to help even more people move into permanent housing, we strongly urge the federal government to provide $26.7 million in funding.