Last month, the agency contracted by the BC Government to resettle refugees was so overwhelmed it briefly asked Ottawa to “press pause” on sending new Syrians to Vancouver.
But a month later, staff are still having trouble finding refugees a permanent place to live.
Chris Friesen with the Immigrant Services Society of BC says staff are working around the clock.
“Since November 4th, we’ve had almost 1,000 government-assisted refugees, about 211 family units. We have as of today found places for 55 families or 210 individuals.”
And he says with the bulk of unsettled refugees currently living in Vancouver-area hotels, settlement workers know they’ve still got a ways to go.
“We currently have 703 individuals in temporary accommodation, about 146 families, and our big push this week is getting folks into permanent accommodation.”
Immigration and Citizenship data shows more than 15,000 Syrians have now arrived in Canada.