ontario news watch

Immigration Department partners with Rainbow Road agency to seek out LGBTQ refugees

OTTAWA — The federal government has partnered with a non-profit to seek out LGBTQ refugees fleeing violence all over the world and refer them to Canada. 

Rainbow Road aims to help people facing persecution from systemic, state-enabled homophobia and transphobia.

Until now, the organization has done that by offering emergency relocation, crisis response and cash assistance to people in danger. 

The partnership with Canada is the first that would see Rainbow Road facilitate government-sponsored refugee resettlement.

Persecution based on sexual orientation and gender identity are on the rise, including in Uganda, which adopted one of the harshest anti-homosexuality laws in the world last week.

Persecuted people are already referred to Canada by the United Nations refugee agency, but Immigration Minister Sean Fraser says this new partnership will help Canada better respond to emerging situations.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2023.

The Canadian Press

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