Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson is appealing to PM Trudeau and new Ontario Premier Doug Ford for money and resources to help deal with the migrant crisis that’s now poised to suffocate the homeless shelter system in his city.
The number of chronically homeless families in Ottawa went from 87 families in 2016 to 236 in 2017 and the number of families being housed in motels or hotel rooms has jumped from 92 families in 2016 to 182 in 2017.
Watson has now written one letter to Trudeau and another to Ford, explaining that “Ottawa continues to experience a high demand for emergency shelter now exacerbated by the pressures of irregular migration.”
He went on to say:
“The ability to respond to the current increased demand for shelter placement is hampered by the lack of capacity. This is affecting not only asylum-seekers but also those families who have been destabilized locally, households moving to Ottawa from other cities and provinces and other newcomers entering Canada through regular immigration channels.”
Aside from the politically correct language about “newcomers” and “irregular migration,” Watson’s dishing out a lot of truth.
Illegal immigration is hurting legal immigrants and it's good to see a politician acknowledge it, however, the blame for this mess rests not only with Trudeau but also with Watson’s mayoral colleague in Toronto, John Tory.
Tory reaffirmed Toronto’s status as an asylum city while his own homeless shelters were bursting at the seams. He was a cheerleader for Trudeau in the wake of the infamous “welcome to Canada” tweet, and has said that Trudeau’s immigration plans are working well for Canada and our urban municipalities.
Watson's pleading in the wrong direction. He should appeal to Tory to quit his moral preening while trying to be the municipal version of Trudeau.