#Quebec; #Canada; #AsylumSeekers; #CHSLDs; #Covid19Pandemic; #Immigration
Quebec, May 26 (Canadian-Media): Hundreds of asylum seekers working as patient attendants in Quebec's long-term care homes, known by their French initials CHSLDs, during the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic are rallying for recognition of their immigration status in Quebec, media reports said.
François Legault. Image credit: Twitter handle
In his morning briefing on May 26, Quebec Premier François Legault said that these asylum seekers would be given a chance to stay in the province if they applied as immigrants.
Although Coalition Avenir Québec premier had previously rejected to give preference for asylum seekers and others without status working in essential jobs during the pandemic, the calls for recognition of their contribution has been growing.
A rally had been held by protestors outside Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Montreal office on Saturday, demanding justice for asylum seekers who had risked their lives by working in CHSLDs during COVID-19 outbreaks.
Legault said he had already contacted Immigration Minister Simon-Jolin Barrette to look at the situation of the asylum seekers, on a case-by-case basis and added he is still considering how to bring in those already working in CHSLDs via the normal immigration process.
His government, said Legault, would also have discussions with the federal government, which is responsible for refugee applications.
Frantz André, a member of the Action Committee for People without Status in Montreal, the group behind the demonstration, said Legault should be taking a stronger stand on the issue to influence the federal government; the final decision maker regarding the immigration status of asylum seekers.