Ontario won't help pay to re-settle border-crossers
The Ontario government says Ottawa is to blame for a housing crisis caused by people crossing the border illegally and should pay 100% of the cost.
A spokesman for Premier Doug Ford says the federal government is encouraging people to cross into Canada illegally and is responsible for the "mess" that has caused.
The comments come as Ford prepares to meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the Ontario legislature.
The federal government recently pledged to give Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba $50 million to help offset some of the costs incurred due to the influx of asylum seekers illegally crossing the Canada-U.S. border. It is not clear what portion of the $11 million earmarked for Ontario Toronto would get.
Last week, mayor John Tory warned that if Toronto did not get get immediate help, the city would not be able to accommodate new refugee claimants and asylum seekers.
As of June 26, some 600 asylum seekers and refugees including 200 children were being housed in college dormitories with another 200 people expected to join them. But they will be forced out August 9 as schools prepare for students to return.
Tory would not say what may happen to those 800 people if a deal for help was not reached. But closing community centres and cancelling programs to house them is not a step the city is prepared to take.
Tory is also calling on the federal government in particular to develop a regional approach to housing refugees and asylum seekers, including identifying potential shelter outside the city.
with files from Siobhan Morris and the Canadian Press