Starting in 2020, the Canadian government will be flagging off the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Partnership, which will help more Canadians in privately sponsoring LGBTQ refugees. This will greatly benefit the scores of people who are fleeing violence and persecution on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
The partnership builds on the Rainbow Refugee Assistance Pilot, by increasing the number of privately sponsored refugees from 15 to 50 per year. The program joins the host of other refugee programs, aimed at protecting vulnerable populations across the world.
“LGBTQ2 refugees have faced unimaginable circumstances just for being who they are. Canada will protect them and help keep them safe,” said Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, in a statement.
In 2018, the Rainbow Refugee Society and the LGBTQ community sponsored 67 refugees to Canada. According to the report, Canada will also support the 37 LGBTQ refugees that are ready to be privately sponsored this year.
Getting into the finer details, the program provides start-up costs and 3 months of support to LGBTQ refugees who are privately sponsored by Canadians. It is said that Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is pitching in with $800,000 for the next five years towards this new initative.
Between 2011 and April 2019, the pilot saw more than 80 LGBTQ refugees being resettled. In 2019, 8,500 government-assisted refugees and 19,000 privately-sponsored refugees would be settled.