Haitian Adoptee Situation Very Fluid: Kenney

Haitian adoptee situation very fluid: Kenney

CBC News
Last Updated: Friday, January 22, 2010 | 8:38 PM ET
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Immigration Minister Jason Kenney said Friday the exact number of Haitian children approved for adoption in Canada and expected to arrive this weekend likely won't be known until the plane carrying them leaves Haiti.

Kenney cautioned that the situation is “very fluid,” adding that they won't know how many of the 86 children fully approved for Canadian adoption are on the first flight until it takes off from Haiti.

“So we ask people to be as patient as they can in the final stages of this process,” he said.

Speaking in Ottawa, Kenney said the ministry on Friday will be contacting parents-to-be of the children expected in the first arriving group.

“We will be letting them know about the logistics, arrival time, airport and so forth as soon as we can,” Kenney told reporters.

Kenney also addressed recent comments from Quebec's immigration minister that the province is ready to loosen its regulations to open the door to additional arrivals from Haiti, despite the fact the federal government has refused to do so.

Quebec Immigration Minister Yolande James said the province will use a clause within its agreement with the federal government to help more Haitians leave the devastated Caribbean country.

Kenney said the province can choose its immigrants according to their own criteria, in co-operation with the federal government, but he said Ottawa will not alter its definition of family or increase the quota for permanent residents in Quebec.