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November 25, 2015
For immediate release

Prince Edward Island to ensure a coordinated response to welcome Syrian refugees

Workforce and Advanced Learning

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Islanders are responding with their usual generosity as the province prepares to welcome 250 Syrian refugees.

“The province is working with partners to do all we can to settle the refugees displaced due to the situation in Syria,” said Workforce and Advanced Learning Minister Richard Brown. “We are more than pleased to be part of this nation-wide humanitarian effort to help these people who have had to leave their homes and their country. I have every confidence that Islanders will go above and beyond to help them make Prince Edward Island their new home.”

A Ministerial Advisory Council has been established to ensure the province is ready to accept and settle refugees into Island communities.

The council will report to the Workforce and Advanced Learning Minister. It is co-chaired by the Deputy Minister of Workforce and Advanced Learning, Sharon Cameron and the Executive Director of the PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada(PEIANC), Craig Mackie.

This group has representatives from private refugee sponsors, the Canadian Red Cross and the Government of Prince Edward Island working in collaboration to support the Government of Canada in facilitating the resettlement of these refugees. The PEI Association for Newcomers to Canada is leading the settlement preparations for the incoming government-assisted refugees.

Together, members of the group will prepare a framework to ensure the transition for families moving to the Island and integrating into the community is seamless. Many of the privately sponsored refugees are coming to Prince Edward Island to reunite with family members who have already settled here. They will be among the first to arrive.

Since 2001, 851 people have come to Prince Edward Island as refugees. Many refugees who have come to the province over the past 25 years from countries like Bhutan, Colombia, and the former Yugoslavia, have put down roots and have chosen to make the Island their permanent home.

“We are extremely pleased with the engagement from partners and stakeholders to mobilize, respond, and welcome the Syrian families to our communities,” said Craig Mackie, Executive Director of the PEIANC.

Temporary and permanent housing is currently being identified.

A toll free number is now available at 1-844-237-7734 and an e-mail address has been set up at for Islanders wishing to make donations of money, goods or their volunteer time.

Media Contact: Anne MacRae
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