Government of Canada renews support for LGBTQ2 refugees

March 26, 2018

By Canadian Immigrants Magazine |

LGBTQ2 refugees have a renewed commitment for support from the Government of Canada.

Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Ahmed Hussen announced that the federal government is renewing a cost-sharing agreement with Rainbow Refugee Society until March 31, 2020. As of April 1, additional funding of $100,000 will be made available to support refugees sponsored under the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Pilot.

The funding provided through this initiative by IRCC supports refugees’ initial costs when they first arrive in Canada, including start-up funds to buy clothes and basic household items. It also provides privately sponsored refugees with three months of income support for their first year; private sponsors provide the remaining nine months.

“Our commitment to providing protection to the world’s most vulnerable people is fundamental to our identity as Canadians, and I’m proud of what we have been able to accomplish through the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Pilot Program,” said Minister Hussen. “LGTBQ2 refugees face unique settlement and integration challenges. Our government is committed to working with the LGBTQ2 community and private sponsors to ensure that the necessary supports are in place for those that we are resettling and welcoming to Canada.”

The goal of the pilot is to increase awareness of the unique needs of LGBTQ2 refugees among Canadian sponsors, and to strengthen overall sponsorship of this vulnerable group. Through the pilot program, the Government of Canada and private sponsors have increased the number of LGBTQ2 refugees Canada has provided protection to in recent years.

“LGBTQ2 rights have no borders, and in this respect Canada is seen as a champion of human rights protection around the world,” said Randy Boissonnault, special advisor to the Prime Minister on LGBTQ2 issues. “Canada strives to be a country where people feel safe and free to be who they are … I am proud of the progress that we are making to ensure that LGBTQ2 refugees are welcomed to Canada.”

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