Toronto receives $11M from feds to deal with spike in asylum seekers

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TORONTO — The City of Toronto now has $11 million in its coffers from the federal government to pay down some costs it has incurred dealing with an influx of irregular border crossers.

Bill Blair, federal minister of border security and organized crime reduction, says talks will continue between the city and federal officials on longer-term solutions that could include further financial support for temporary housing for asylum seekers..

Blair made the comments this morning after a meeting with Toronto Mayor John Tory, who has raised the alarm about the strain asylum seekers have been putting on the city’s shelter system.

The money was announced in June as part of a $50-million commitment to Quebec, Ontario and Manitoba to help cover some of the costs they have borne as a result of the ongoing spike in asylum seekers crossing the Canada-U.S. border irregularly.

Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said in June the money was meant as a first instalment to the provinces. In total, $36 million was promised to Quebec, $11 million to Ontario and $3 million to Manitoba.

Last week, the Ontario provincial government requested $200 million from the federal government to pay the costs of asylum seekers living in Ontario, including other areas in the province such as Ottawa.

The Canadian Press

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