Leona Alleslev, Deputy Leader of Canada’s Conservatives and of the Official Opposition and Shadow Cabinet Minister for Foreign Affairs, issued the following statement:
“As a result of this crisis, many Canadians have been stranded abroad and are now desperately trying to make their way home. Canadians stranded abroad are facing increasing uncertainty and anxiety as COVID-19 spreads, borders close and countries rapidly restrict peoples’ movements. 
“Over the past week, Conservatives have been contacted by numerous Canadians who are frustrated with the repatriation system that the government has put in place. This includes many vulnerable Canadians who were advised they had been selected for a repatriation flight only to discover the system would not allow them to purchase a ticket.
“Conservatives are calling on the government to immediately take the following actions to support the repatriation of Canadians during the COVID-19 crisis:

  1. Fix the current system to ensure that vulnerable Canadians identified as higher priority evacuees receive confirmed tickets for the designated flights.
  2. Charter commercial aircraft to repatriate Canadians and arrange payment terms directly with those individuals.
  3. Where chartered commercial flights are not possible deploy military aircraft to repatriate Canadians.

“Canadians stranded abroad expect a fair, timely, and efficient process to secure their passage home. While we understand that this is an extraordinary situation, it is clear from the countless messages that Conservatives have received from Canadians that the current system must urgently change.

“Conservatives will continue to use our strengthened Opposition to ask tough questions on behalf of Canadians and put forward constructive solutions to ensure that no one falls through the cracks.”