Mayor-elect Olivia Chow slammed the federal government Wednesday for not taking responsibility for housing refugees it brings into the country, but said she’s “hopeful” she’ll be able to work with them to improve the situation.

“The federal government is not paying a cent right now for refugees’ housing, period,” Chow told reporters following a meeting in Scarborough with community leaders and the private sector as part of her transition. “That is the truth. I am just saying right up front.”

Chow cited city figures indicating that a third of the clients in the city’s overflowing shelter system are refugees, and said refugees are an area of federal responsibility.

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