Mayor Gregor Robertson will host public meeting on Syrian refugees

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      The plight of Syrian refugees has caught the attention of Vancouver city politicians.

      Mayor Gregor Robertson has invited the public to attend a forum at 7 p.m. on Tuesday (September 8) on the main floor of Vancouver City Hall.

      Chris Friesen, chair of the Canadian Immigrant Settlement Sector Alliance, and MOSAIC executive director Eyob Naizghi will be on hand to provide information.

      They'll be joined by senior officials with the Immigrant Settlement Services Society of B.C.

      The public forum comes two days after hundreds of people gathered on the south side of the Vancouver Art Gallery to protest the Conservative government's restrictions on allowing more refugees to come to Canada.

      Speakers at the rally urged the city to move forward on making Vancouver a "sanctuary city".

      Last year, Robertson endorsed the concept.

      The term sanctuary city implies that public officials who come in contact with undocumented people on a variety of issues will not refer this information to the Canadian Border Services Agency so that they could be deported.

      This could involve health care, education, transit fare evasion, housing, domestic abuse, or other areas.

      "The work on Sanctuary City, which has taken place over the last year in the city, will be a solid platform for launching an initiative to help with the Syrian refugee crisis," Robertson said in a news release.

      Robertson also plans to introduce a motion at cityc ouncil to call on the federal government to help a much larger number of refugeees.

      The motion will urge the government to set a "baseline national target of at least 20,000 government assisted refugees annually by 2020".




      Sep 8, 2015 at 7:54am

      Great thought but I'm wondering how the average refugee will come up with 2 million for a place to live in this city.


      Sep 8, 2015 at 12:13pm

      What a bunch of hypocrites carried away with their own glory.

      The truth won't be found at any public display of mutual black slapping or city council meeting. It will come out in the federal election results. And polls are wildly innacurate now so we'll have no way of knowing until then.


      Sep 8, 2015 at 5:09pm

      "The plight of Syrian refugees has caught the attention of Vancouver city politicians."

      Really! So what took them so long? Same question for all the other newly sanctimonious wannabe saviors who were so vocal at the Art Gallery on Sunday.

      The conflict that created these refugees has been on-going for years throughout which Assad, the rebels and ISIS/ISIL have been killing people by the hundred thousand and creating refugees by the million. ISIS has been proudly publishing videos of their atrocities for all to see - slaughter, mass beheadings, beheading of children, burning victims alive, throwing homosexuals of the tops of buildings and every other brutality one could think of. Suddenly politicians wake up and notice refugees?

      Also note that the Kurdi family whose mother and children tragically drowned last week came from the Syrian/Turkish border city of Kobani. That anyone made it out of there at all, to get to a refugee camp, is a near miracle. Nearby towns were over-run by ISIS a year ago and Kobani nearly fell but for the brave fight put up by the Kurdish Peshmerga and (eventually) coalition airstrikes (99.9% USAF); and no thanks to those who stood by without lifting a finger (eg. Turkey). The siege of Kobani has been in the news for months.

      And just now Vancouver politicians have suddenly discovered a "crisis"? How perceptive!

      Any cause for his political gain...

      Sep 13, 2015 at 11:05am

      Gregor will jump on any bandwagon that his voting demographic of do gooders and tree huggers connects with. This is a guy who promotes a green city and drives around in a gas guzzling Porsche Carrera (oh yes, I have seen him it). He is the personification of a lie as any politician out there. He is not a socialist but an opportunist.