TORONTO — Ontario’s health minister says the province is prepared to take roughly 4,000 of the 10,000 Syrian refugees set to arrive in Canada by the end of the year.
Eric Hoskins says since Ontario makes up about 40 per cent of the country’s population, it is prepared to take in that proportion of refugees, which would amount to roughly 10,000 of the 25,000 refugees Canada has said it will take.
Since the federal government pushed back the timeline for settling 25,000 people from the end of this year to the end of February, Hoskins says Ontario may not need as many resources to accommodate them as previously thought.
Hoskins has said Ontario was looking at using recently decommissioned hospitals to house refugees on an interim basis, but he says now they may not be needed.
He says since the majority of refugees will be privately sponsored, their housing needs are already met.
Hoskins says Ontario had also thought it would have to medically screen most of the refugees arriving in the province, but that is also no longer the case since they will be screened before they arrive.