Canada builds on pledges and partnerships at the Global Refugee Forum

December 15, 2023—Geneva, Switzerland—Across the globe, more than 114 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes, and one third of them are refugees. In response to this vast humanitarian need, Canada shares a responsibility to step up and take action. We continue to be a leading example in offering protection to the most vulnerable populations, supporting the countries that host them, and creating opportunities beyond resettlement through skills-based pathways.

This week, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, led Canada’s delegation to the Global Refugee Forum in Geneva. Building on previous commitments, he presented and endorsed a number of pledges that advance solutions to the global refugee crisis.

Building on Canada’s recent work to welcome over 40,000 vulnerable Afghans, which has been achieved and exceeded, the Minister announced $21 million for the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to support vulnerable Afghan populations in Central Asia and Pakistan who are fleeing Afghanistan. This funding will help these neighbouring countries become better equipped to support them and respond to their needs.

Minister Miller highlighted how Canada plans to resettle over 136,000 refugees in the next 3 years. Canada will continue to offer protection to the world’s most vulnerable, including women in precarious situations, ethnic and religious minorities, members of LGBTQI+ communities, Rohingya refugees and human rights defenders.

Canada also pledged to continue using complementary pathways to help more refugees and other displaced people find safety. This includes a commitment to make the Economic Mobility Pathways Pilot, a refugee labour mobility pathway, a permanent economic immigration program. Canada will also explore an education pathway for eligible refugee and displaced students to study in Canada, as we continue to champion the growth of complementary pathways worldwide.

In addition, Canada co-sponsored the Securing Sustainable Futures mega-pledge, to help all refugee children receive a quality education, including access to well-supported national education systems. This co-sponsorship demonstrates Canada’s commitment to continue working with global partners to champion education for refugees and local community members in host countries, as well as amplify the voices of refugees.

Canada recognizes that climate change is increasingly compelling people to move within and across borders. This is why the Government of Canada announced funding for the IOM to support the efforts of Mexico in addressing the connections between migration, disasters, climate change and environmental degradation. The IOM will assist Mexico in developing an innovative methodology to collect data on migration, environment and climate change that will then be used to inform potential policy actions by local and state governments.

Canada’s pledges to the Global Refugee Forum reflect our continued leadership in providing humanitarian assistance that addresses pressing needs globally, including food and nutrition assistance, in new and ongoing crises. These pledges also reflect Canada’s focus on longer-term development assistance and advocacy, including for displaced people and host communities such as Venezuela and the surrounding region, Afghanistan and Pakistan, and Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

Canada will continue to build on the international partnerships, pledges and momentum gained from the Global Refugee Forum to advance better solutions for refugees, and more help for communities and countries that receive and host them.

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