A machine monitors a patients vital signs

A machine monitors a patients vital signs. © UNHCR/Roger Arnold

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, welcomes Canada’s announcement to open pathways to permanent residency for asylum-seekers in the healthcare sector who have worked on the frontlines of the country’s COVID-19 response.

“This is an exemplary act of solidarity which recognises the service and dedication of some of the most marginalized and vulnerable members in society. It is a reminder of the exceptional contributions refugees and asylum-seekers make to the communities that welcome them,” said Rema Jamous Imseis, UNHCR’s Representative in Canada.

UNHCR understands the decision will benefit asylum-seekers across the country who meet eligibility requirements and who have been playing a crucial role in healthcare institutions during the pandemic.

“We have seen firsthand, across the world, that refugees, asylum-seekers and displaced people have skills and resources that can be part of the solution,” Jamous Imseis said.

“They risk their own lives to support and care for others in the fight against COVID-19. From Colombia to Bangladesh, from Uganda to Canada, incredible stories have emerged as people come together to battle a disease that knows no borders”.

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Originally published on UNHCR on 14 August 2020

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