Quebec receives the most number of asylum seekers that enter Canada by crossing the US – Canada border through illegal paths. Quebec has the easiest terrain, unlike Ontario, where you need to travel a lot. However, with the heavy influx of asylum seekers, Quebec is failing at maintaining its resources, leading to a discussion with the federal government. After a lot of discussions, Trudeau administration has decided to immediately move asylum seekers to the places they want to settle outside of Quebec.
Usually, asylum seeking cases take two years to come to a decision, and during the whole process, the applicant needs to stay in Canada. Because of most of them entire from Quebec, they prefer staying in Quebec, which puts a lot of pressure on the province’s infrastructure and medical resources. 40 percent of the 6,000 asylum seekers that entered Quebec in 2018 want to settle in a different province, preferably Ontario. In 2016, Ontario received 40 percent of the total immigrants, making it the most popular province among immigrants. Debbie Douglas, the executive director, Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants, said that more people entering Canada puts more pressure on the system. The Quebec shelter system cannot handle any more immigrants, and there’s no money left to support them.
In the past few months, Roxham Road, southern Quebec has become the most popular unofficial road for crossing. It was first used by more than 20,000 Haitians living in the US in 2016 and has ever since has been used by many. Around 7,000 English-speaking Nigerians are set to cross the US – Canada border using the same route in the coming months. In April 2018, the US government granted US travel visas to more than 13,000 Nigerians. David Heurtel, immigration minister of Quebec, talked with Ralph Goodale, Public Safety Minister about discussing the issue with his US counterparts.