‘Pallister is right’: Emerson official urges feds to address asylum-seeker surge

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The reeve of the municipality of Emerson-Franklin, Greg Janzen, says he does not believe the flow of migrants over the border will end any time soon. (Angela Johnston/CBC)

Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister is right to keep pressuring the federal government to do more to help address the wave of refugees streaming into the province, a local official in the border town of Emerson says.

“Mr. Pallister is right: we need to start ramping this up now instead of trying to play catch up later,” said Greg Janzen, reeve of the Emerson-Franklin rural municipality.

“The RCMP are trying to do their best here and it would be nice to have even more manpower to try and keep these people from coming into the town of Emerson.”

More than 200 asylum seekers from around the world have walked north across Manitoba’s shared southern border with North Dakota and Minnesota since the beginning of the year, some crossing amid dangerously cold temperatures or in the middle of snowstorms.

Janzen said he appreciates the help Emerson has received so far, but he also agrees with Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister’s repeated calls on Ottawa to do more to address the asylum seeker issue in Manitoba.

Pallister wrote a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and has been urging the federal government to work together with Manitoba to chart a joint path forward.

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