There are different types of refugees, but in general, they are eligible for public services like education and healthcare, but can't vote.
Who are refugees?
As a refugee, you can:
- Receive limited health coverage under the Interim Federal Health Program
- Attend any high school in Ontario (Catholic or public)
- Work (under special circumstances)
- Attend College or University (under special circumstances)
- Receive protection under Canadian law and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms
You must pay taxes and respect all Canadian laws at the federal, provincial and municipal levels.
As a refugee, you cannot:
- Vote or run for political office
- Hold certain jobs that have a high-level security clearance requirement
- Remain in Canada if you are convicted of a serious criminal offence and have been told to leave the country. You can lose your status as a refugee claimant if you are convicted of a serious crime. In that case, you may be deported.
- Get OSAP to pay for your post-secondary education (this only applies to refugee claimants)
Find more information:
- Apply for health care, you can learn more about the Interim Federal Health Program here. Apply for a work-permit, you can find out how here. Attend post-secondary school and need to apply for OSAP, you can learn more here. If you have any questions about making Ontario your home, you can find it here on the Citizenship and Immigrations website. If you need to talk to someone in your community, you can find services here.