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Brampton Mayor "Patrick Brown" calls for more Restrictive International Student Visa Policy

Los Angeles, Jan 21, 2024 A.Gary Singh

Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown is urging the federal government to implement measures to address the housing crisis exacerbated by an influx of international students in his city. The mayor's proposal includes capping the number of international students allowed into Canada and requiring accommodation plans before issuing visas. With approximately 650,000 residents, Brampton has experienced a surge in its international student population, particularly from India.

Housing Challenges in Brampton
Mayor Brown highlights the pressing issue of housing affordability, emphasizing that a significant number of students attending colleges in Brampton struggle to afford rent and often reside in unsafe and illegal conditions. The mayor's concerns reflect the broader challenges faced by cities dealing with rapid demographic changes.

Call for Federal Intervention
In a letter addressed to the federal immigration and housing ministers, Mayor Brown called for immediate action. He proposed that the federal government link each student visa issuance to appropriate accommodation, coordinated by postsecondary institutions. Additionally, he advocates for housing addresses to be in proximity to the community where the student is studying.

Restrictive Visa Policy and Annual Caps
Mayor Brown's recommendations extend to a more restrictive visa policy, including an annual cap on student permits. He suggests prioritizing postsecondary institutions with comprehensive housing plans. The mayor contends that these changes are necessary to ensure the well-being of international students and to relieve the strain on municipalities like Brampton.

Data Highlights Challenges in Ontario
Citing data, Mayor Brown points out that Ontario hosts more international students than all other provinces and territories combined. A substantial number of these students settle in Brampton, contributing to issues such as housing affordability and substandard living conditions.

City's Resource Drain and Lack of Compensation
Mayor Brown expresses concern over the resource drain on the city, with students residing in Brampton while attending colleges located hundreds of kilometers away. He emphasizes the lack of compensation for the city, noting that many students live in overcrowded conditions, with up to 16 people in a basement apartment.

Support for International Students, Critique of Immigration System
While Mayor Brown supports the idea of international students coming to Canada, he criticizes the current immigration system, arguing that it unfairly impacts both the community and the students. He contends that international students are being taken advantage of, turning the system into a financial resource for colleges.


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