Feds give $7 million for asylum seekers suffering homelessness to Mississauga and Brampton

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Published November 24, 2023 at 9:17 am

refugees in shelters 70% mississauga brampton

Ottawa has stepped up to help keep asylum seekers from experiencing homelessness in Mississauga and Brampton just days after a man was found dead outside a former Region of Peel shelter.

An offer of $7 million in funding was put to Peel Regional Council on Thursday to build a new reception centre near Toronto Pearson International Airport in Mississauga with the goal of helping asylum seekers find housing as temperatures drop.

The funding comes following the death of an “asylum claimant” last week, who Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown said was found outside what was once a Peel family shelter in Mississauga.

“This agreement will save lives,” Brown said in a post on social media thanking federal Immigration Minister Marc Miller “for his hands on (sic) approach to the asylum claimant crisis.”

In September, the Region said its shelter system is running at 260 per cent capacity with refugees making up close to 60 per cent of the shelter population. The Region took steps to provide temporary accommodations to people in need but says the temporary measure only put “further financial and operational strain on Peel’s emergency shelter system.”

The former shelter where the man was found had been relocated earlier to the Meadowvale area of Mississauga.

Peel Regional Police said the “sudden death” of the man, believed to be in his 40s, has been deemed not suspicious by the coroner.

At a news conference following the death, Brown called on senior levels of government to take action as an influx of asylum seekers in Peel and elsewhere across the GTA are struggling to find supports.

The Region has yet to release details on how the shelter will operate, but an update is expected on Friday.

“Now more than ever in the face of a global migration crisis we need to work closer together,” Miller said in a post on social media.

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