Mayor welcomes refugees to Vancouver

"Vancouver and communities across the country have a longstanding commitment to welcoming refugees and their families in times of need. This proud history of helping refugees start new lives with hope, security, and freedom is at the heart of what makes Vancouver such an inclusive and compassionate city.

"In recent years the City of Vancouver has taken a number of steps to increase our capacity to welcome refugees, including a contribution of $4.1 million in land and grants for the construction of a new Vancouver Welcome House for refugees. The City has also worked to assist residents in their efforts to support refugees, and held a Syrian refugee forum this September at City Hall, bringing together key settlement experts and hundreds of members of the public who wanted to learn more about how our community can do its part to help.

"Building on the momentum of the refugee forum, today Deputy Mayor Reimer represented the City in joining a call for action to help support Syrian refugee resettlement in BC. In the coming months the City will be working with Immigrant Services Society of BC and other key supporters, including the Mayors of cities such as Coquitlam and Surrey, to assist Syrian refugees settling in the Lower Mainland, and provide information for residents offering donations, looking to volunteer, or seeking more information. 

"These new arrivals will come with little more than their families and hope. They need help finding housing and jobs, learning English, and navigating a new culture and city, and I encourage you to find out how you can help welcome our new arrivals by visiting the Immigrant Settlement Services of BC website at ISSBC.org, or vancouver.ca.

"When I recently spoke with Prime Minister Trudeau, one of the first things I expressed was the willingness of Vancouver to help with the successful integration of refugees in our communities. The City is proud to support refugees and we will continue to work with federal and provincial partners as well as local community groups to help give our new arrivals a true Vancouver welcome."

- Mayor Gregor Robertson