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May 16, 2022·edited May 16, 2022

The headline for this story doesn't really seem to fit the story iteself. Yes, the government is better at announcing programs than they are at quickly implementing them. But, it sounds like programming is coming online -- the biometrics issue was reported about a month ago as a significant stumbling block, but according to this piece, it seems like its getting addressed.

The more telling quote to me is this one: "We have to accept the fact that Canada isn't their chosen place of destination. In most cases, they want to be close to Ukraine." That totally makes sense. People are hoping the was will be relatively short and don't want to establish a whole new life in Canada. So, maybe the more interesting question is: what could/should Canada be doing to support its NATO partners who are more attractive to refugees so they aren't overwhelmed?

Also -- the efforts of the expat community in Canada, which can move a lot faster than the government, seem to be the heros of this story! They're getting stuff done, and that's to be celebrated.

Good piece, but the headline and lede felt like they didn't quite match the meat of the story.

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No country’s government is agile in these circumstances. This is a massive emergency. Who would be prepared for this? If you read news sites outside of Canada and the US, you will see the same scenario as we have. I am so tired of the ignorance of ‘how things work’ shown by people who just have a gripe.

For sure, communities, especially informal groups, can get the ball rolling quickly because they are connected and, quite frankly, have no accountability. There will be few demands to explain actions taken and no reports. Governments and their departments on the other hand, have a responsibility to ensure that the decisions made are those that are reasonable and are within a protocol which manages risk. Government knows that whatever they do, it will attract criticism.

And, just to clear up another nonsense (one can only hope), the PM and his Cabinet are not the ones who actually do the tasks required. That’s the job of civil servants. Government passes legislation, civil servants put it into practice.

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And yet Newfoundland & Labrador showed us how to do it in a flash! It reminds me of when Trudeau announced our bringing in 45K+ Syrian refugees, some sponsored through the federal government and others privately and/or with some govt support.

I was directly involved in this. The Settlement Services and English as a Language (ESL) centres waited far too long to receive their funding, the ESL classes were overwhelmed with Arabic speakers leaving other nationalities in the classes feeling quickly insignificant; in addition the independent groups provided a lot more direct one on one support for a very long time to the refugees.

IMO the governments of countries like Canada that are located thousands of miles and water away from a conflict, offer this kind of support partly to make themselves look good.

Refugee specialists are ignored, yet they know it is far less expensive and far more effective to keep the refugees as close to their homeland as possible. Re Ukraine just send the money and supplies to neighbouring countries like Poland. The culture is similar, the shock to the refugees is less, and most refugees want to go home as soon as possible.

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While no expert on bureaucracy and government, I gather political announcements do not typically follow implementation. Quite the contrary, following some kind of appropriate level political/policy feasibility assessment, political announcements often trigger the launching of bureaucratic implementation. After all the public service follows political direction, especially regarding new programming. Implementation may require shifting resources, hiring and training new staff, rolling out the policy and procedures, etc. By nature bureaucracies are slower than public responses that don't have to consider HR policies, buy-in from overlapping depts., etc., etc. Although this is the normal business of bureaucracies, nevertheless there are no magic wands either, when it comes to launching a new project.

The broader concern I would generally have is the opaque nature under which government bureaucratic implementation occurs in an ideally more open and transparent democracy.

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There's value in the announcement; war is partly psychology. Letting Ukraine know we are coming, if not yet there; and letting Russia know that Ukraine has deep backing, all have effects.

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Federal Liberal Party of Canada couldn't organize a 2 car funeral.

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Typical Trudeau. All mouth and platitudes and no action to speak of.

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Canadians as regular citizens are generally terrific at organizing and providing help to those in need. The best one can expect of government is that they not get in the way which is too often the case. Of course, our expectations that a the government of a population the size of California's and ten (twenty? ) times the geographic area can produce real assistance as well as one with ten times the resources, is naive at best.

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