Quebec minister 'surprised' asylum seekers given free bus tickets from New York City

MONTREAL — Quebec's immigration minister says she was "surprised" to learn the City of New York is helping to provide free bus tickets to migrants heading north to claim asylum in Canada.

Christine Fréchette says the story highlights the need for Ottawa to solve the problem at Roxham Road, which is an unofficial border crossing south of Montreal used by tens of thousands of people last year to claim asylum.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams told Fox 5 this morning that his administration helps in the "re-ticketing process" for people who arrive in the city but want to go elsewhere.

He told the news station that the city does not push or force people to leave but some express a desire to move on to other places, including Canada.

His comments come after the New York Post reported that some migrants in New York City are being given free tickets to Plattsburgh, N.Y., from where they travel about half an hour by shuttle or taxi to cross into Quebec at Roxham Road.

An official with Adams' office said the city doesn't treat requests for bus tickets to Plattsburgh any differently than those for other American cities.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 6, 2023.

The Canadian Press