October 30, 2023—Ottawa—The Government of Canada has a longstanding and proud tradition of welcoming the world’s most vulnerable people.
In August 2021, when the Taliban took control of Afghanistan, leading to a political, economic, and humanitarian crisis that affected, and continues to affect, millions of people, Canada took action. In the two years since, Canada has provided critical support to the Afghan people. This ongoing support is driven by our deep connection to Afghanistan, including with those who served alongside us for over two decades, our desire to serve the Afghan people, and their growing diaspora that has helped to strengthen Canada.
Today, the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, shared that Canada has met its commitment to welcome at least 40,000 vulnerable Afghans since August 2021. Ours is one of the largest Afghan resettlement programs in the world, and our work continues.
The Government of Canada remains steadfast in its commitment to help vulnerable Afghans. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will show flexibility and continue to process eligible applications submitted under the Afghan special measures on a priority basis.
Reaching this important milestone was made possible by the tireless efforts of multiple partners in Canada and abroad, including countries in the region, the United Nations Refugee Agency, the International Organization for Migration, and non-governmental organizations.
As Afghan newcomers continue to settle across Canada, we have also seen tremendous support from provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and civil society. This includes Canadians who have stepped up to sponsor Afghan refugees, as well as resettlement service providers who have provided temporary accommodations, coordinated access to critical healthcare, education, language and skills training, and social services. Successful resettlement involves the efforts of society as a whole, and the many partners in more than 180 communities across Canada have helped Afghans not only start their lives in Canada, but contribute to their communities and thrive.