Ontario Searching For Money From Canada

Doug Downey wants the Federal Government to fund immigration and refugee legal-aid services

The Province is looking for more money from the Country.

Attorney General Doug Downey indicates he’s received no response to his requests to federal Justice Minister David Lametti and Finance Minister Bill Morneau, calling on Ottawa to properly fund immigration and refugee legal-aid services in his province.

The formula used produces a fair distribution of the available federal funds and reflects case volumes across the country. Over the past five years, Ontario received 62 to 74 per cent of the total annual federal funding available.

Justice officials have been in regular contact with their provincial counterparts and Lametti discussed legal aid with Premier Doug Ford’s former attorney general Caroline Mulroney, earlier this year.

The Ford government is well aware that provinces and territories are responsible for the management of their individual legal-aid programs.

David Taylor, Spokesperson for Federal Justice Minister David Lametti

Downey has now written to Trudeau, asking him to instruct his ministers to reply to Ontario’s requests to fill what he says is a funding gap of $25 million.

Downey says the number of refugee claims in the province has soared by nearly 160% since 2013, a phenomenon he blames on the Trudeau’s government’s immigration policies.

OTHER NOTES

  • The PC government announced it was cutting funding for refugee and immigration-law services provided by Legal Aid Ontario in the Spring
  • Doug Downey says Ontario has only been receiving 35% of the costs covered for legal-aid services provided to immigrants