Refugee, asylum seekers removed from college dorms as 185 more arrive in Toronto
City officials say the relocation of refugee and asylum seekers from two college dormitories in Toronto coincides with the arrival of 185 more claimants during the last seven days.
Dormitories at Centennial College and Humber College were being used to temporarily house asylum seekers, but the accommodations had to be vacated by Aug. 9 to make way for returning students.
At its peak, the city said about 675 people occupied both spaces as a shelter.
All the claimants housed at the dorms have since been moved to hotel and motel rooms across the Greater Toronto Area.
“With the partnership of other levels of government and surrounding municipalities, we have been able to relocate the dormitory population,” Mayor John Tory said in a media release.
“However, the city continues to face great pressure on our shelter system that requires long-term action and partnership.”
Bill Blair, the federal minister of Border Security and Organized Crime Reduction, said last week Toronto has received its offer of $11 million to help offset some of the costs associated with accommodating refugees and asylum seekers in the city.
Tory has been adamant about the need for federal assistance to help with the cost and logistics of relocation.
Since November 2016, Toronto has welcomed 5,482 claimants in the city’s shelter system and has found permanent housing for 2,900 during that time period.
As of Aug. 8, the total number of refugees in the city’s shelter system is 2,880.
The city says it needs $64 million to recover costs associated with housing.
Meanwhile, the Ontario government has formally requested $200 million from the federal government to pay for the cost of asylum seekers who entered Canada from the United States and who are living in Ontario.
VIDEO: John Tory praises federal government intervention on asylum seeker housing problem
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