The US to emulate Canada immigration program

The US seems to be heading towards a system that allows for the private sponsoring of refugees in a similar manner to the Canadian program, deployed in the midst of the Syrian immigration crisis. A pilot project for the US is in the works, according to a group that assists the government with resettling refugees. The project has also been referred to by a small government advocate, the Canadian immigration minister, and an assistant secretary of state.

David Bier from the libertarian Cato Institute says that he used Canada’s experience to help make the argument to US government officials that the private sector could play a large role in the resettlement of refugees.

Bier says that government officials were initially reticent when he first raised the idea last year, but that the White House were much more enthusiastic, and eventually the State Department became involved with sorting out the details. While that was happening, international attention was being paid to the Canadian program. Bier notes that the fact it was already proven to be an operational success was invaluable in convincing the US government of its viability, adding that he is certain it will happen in the US.

The Canadian program enables immigrant refugees to be sponsored by individuals for $12,600. The fee includes help with income and early costs including rent and groceries. Almost 50 percent of the Syrian refugees allowed into Canada towards the end of 2015 did so via private or semi-private initiatives.