Grande Prairie won’t be one of the hubs for settling refugees in Alberta. Minister of Jobs, Skills, Training and Labour Lori Sigurdson is expecting 2,500 to 3,000 Syrian refugees before February, coming by way of Toronto and Montreal. She says they’ll be settled in Edmonton, Calgary, Red Deer, Medicine Hat and Lethbridge, based on those communities’ capacity.
Health Minister Sarah Hoffman explains the first wave of refugees will be supported by private sponsors, but the federal government is expected to help cover housing costs. It has committed to accepting 25,000 refugees by the end of February, a deadline Immigration Minister John McCallum admits will be hard to meet.
The province is setting aside an extra million dollar to support resettling them, in addition to the $250,000 pledged in early September.