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Ottawa calls on Quebec not to negotiate on asylum seekers in the media

Photo: Adrian Wyld The Canadian Press The amounts requested by the Legault government, “that can be negotiated and discussed around the table,” said Quebec lieutenant in the Trudeau government, Pablo Rodriguez, on Wednesday.

Lia Lévesque – The Canadian Press

February 21, 2024

  • Canada

While the Quebec government is asking the federal government to pay it $1 billion for asylum seekers, Quebec's lieutenant in the Trudeau government, Pablo Rodriguez, invites it to discuss these issues at the right table and not by interposed media.

While in Montreal on Wednesday, for a press conference on another subject, Minister Rodriguez added that even if Quebec “talks about sums owed”, he sees it rather as “sums requested” from the government federal.

“That is negotiated and discussed around the table, not through media releases,” replied Mr. Rodriguez to François Legault’s government.

“For the current year, we are giving more than 750 million dollars, 725 last year, more than 700 million dollars each year,” he added.

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The Legault government is demanding $1 billion, arguing that this is what welcoming asylum seekers has cost it since 2021. The Quebec government complains of not being listened to on the part of the Canadian government.

“They are heard. We salute the colossal effort of Quebec. It is certain that Quebec is doing beyond its share,” assured Minister Rodriguez.

Ottawa “disconnected,” says Fréchette

In response, Quebec Minister of Immigration, Christine Fréchette, said that “the time for discussions with Quebec is over. It’s time for urgent action.”

Quebec has complained about the repercussions of the arrival in such proportions of asylum seekers, who require health care, education services, last resort financial assistance, among others.

“The federal government is completely out of touch. He must realize the reality in Quebec which is generated by the excessive arrival of asylum seekers,” added the Quebec minister.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116