Asylum Seekers Start Arriving To Montreal's Olympic Stadium

People dump trash and raw sewage into canals that run through Port-au-Prince Haiti. When it rains the canals overflow and flood poor neighborhoods

Asylum Seekers Start Arriving To Montreal's Olympic Stadium

Montreal's iconic Olympic Stadium has undergone a temporary transformation into a refugee welcome center.

Hussen said Haitians in the US should stay and apply there for refugee status.

The stadium, which was built to host the 1976 Summer Olympics, had more than 100 green cots, along with blankets and metal dividers set up inside its massive, concrete halls.

The English Montreal School Board announced Friday it's opening its vacant St. Raphael School building in the Villeray neighbourhood for refugees. "You can count on our complete support", Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre said on Twitter.

He also pointed out, however, that this situation is a direct result of Trump's immigration policies. Deportations of almost 60,000 people in the United States under the Trump administration could take place by January 2018, according to CBC. The location is a key crossing point for illegal entry into Quebec.

Dupuis said because of Montreal's large Haitian community, "there is a stronger attraction to coming to Quebec for Haitians than in other provinces".

In the United States, the Trump administration is considering ending a program that granted Haitians so-called "temporary protected status" following the massive natural disaster that struck Haiti in 2010.

In the first six months of the year, Canada processed 18,306 asylum claims.

Senior DHS officials said in May that conditions in Haiti were improving since the quake - and that the program could be terminated next year.

Many of the Haitians under TPS permits have been in the United States for years and often arrived with legitimate visitor visas or by clandestine methods.

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One Haitian woman told the CBC she left the United States because she didn't "know what was going to happen". It's already more than 75% of the total number officials registered past year.

Kathleen Weil said that between January 1 and June 30, 6,500 asylum seekers arrived in Quebec - 35 per cent of all asylum seekers entering Canada during that period.

The pace of arrivals accelerated in the latter half of July, Weil said.

Why are these asylum seekers coming to Canada?

The stadium has agreed to house about 450 asylum-seekers for a couple of months while the government figures out what to do next.

Experts caution it's not so easy to meet government requirements under Canadian asylum laws and have the chance to stay.

Many of the Haitians entering Canada illegally from the USA are saying that they fear deportation due now the White House is considering changing the temporary protected refugee status of Haitians who came to America following the 2010 natural disaster.

In January, following President Donald Trump's first executive order to restrict entry to the USA from some Middle East countries, Trudeau tweeted out a message, "to those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canada will welcome you regardless of your faith'".

"It's not just a matter of arriving and saying, 'I'm afraid, ' " she told CNN.

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