Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay Rainy River, is pleased that the Government of Canada has announced special immigration measures for the Afghans who worked for Canada during and after our combat mission in Afghanistan. These measures will give them a path to a future in Canada.
Over the past year and a half, MP Powlowski and his staff have worked tirelessly with veterans, private organizations and within government to ensure these brave Afghans are not left behind. This included having his staff work with veterans to identify cases of contractors in Afghanistan under threat, double-checking their documents and those provided by their military supporters and finding former Canadian soldiers who appeared in photographs with them in order to follow up on these interpreter’s references. This work has been integral to the government’s identification of these individuals.
MP Powlowski would like to specifically highlight and thank local Thunder Bay veteran Robin Rickards, who has himself been unflagging in his persistence to not only bring two of his close Afghan colleagues that had served with him to Canada, but all Afghans that have provided lifesaving support to Canada’s men and women in uniform.
“Minister Mendicino’s announcement today with regards to saving the lives of the Afghan men and women that saved the lives of Canadian service members during Canada’s time in Afghanistan is the culmination of years of hardwork by current and former members of Canada’s Armed Forces and civillian volunteers. Thunder Bay army veteran, Robin Rickard’s perseverance on this issue cannot be overstated. He continues to represent the highest levels of heroism and sacrifice that we have come to expect from all of our men and women in uniform.
I am also extremely proud of Robert St. Aubin, Celine Marti and my other staff members and the important role they played in making this happen. I would also like to thank my predecessor MP Don Resnak for picking this issue up when he was in office,” MP Powlowski said.
“So many Afghan citizens put themselves at risk to assist Canada, both during and after our military mission in Afghanistan. Now they face even greater threats from the Taliban, and we are doing everything possible to bring them to safety, working closely with domestic and international partners – including my friend and colleague MP Marcus Powloski. Lives hang in the balance, which is why we’re taking timely and decisive action to support the Afghans who supported Canada, and offer them a future in this country. Canada will do right by those who did so much for us,” said Honourable Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship.