''Model'' family to be deported Sunday despite provincial selection papers

It's one minute to midnight for a family of Sri Lankan immigrants in Montreal who must be deported tomorrow, because they have not been admitted as refugees.

Five years after their asylum claim, the Lawrence family is described as a model of integration.

One of the Lawrence sisters is now a doctor in oncology. 

The head of the Commission scolaire de Montreal, Catherine Harel-Bourdon, calls Leony Pavithra Lawrence an "outstanding student" admired for their perseverance.

Politicians from the NDP, Quebec Solidaire and the Parti Quebecois have publicly urged the Canadian government to grant the family a reprieve.

On Friday, Quebec Minister of Immigration David Heurtel granted them selection certificates from the province for humanitarian reasons, which is a first step towards obtaining permanent residence.

Mr. Heurtel wrote on Twitter that Leony Pavithra Lawrence "is an example of integration and represents the kind of immigration we want to welcome."

The office of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Minister of Immigration Ralph Goodale could not be reached for comment on Saturday.