The Canadian Council for Refugees called on the government months ago to introduce exemptions to the travel measures for people being resettled as refugees and entering to make a refugee protection claim. Janet Dench, the organization’s executive director, said refugee travel is essential, saying that those awaiting resettlement live in precarious circumstances and that the pandemic has only added to their vulnerability.
NDP immigration critic Jenny Kwan said processing delays were significant before the pandemic and “things have just gone from bad to worse.”
Ms. Kwan said the lag can be particularly burdensome for refugee families who left family members behind and made applications to reunite. “I am regularly in discussion with people who made an application, been waiting a year, two years or more with having their application processed,” she said.