Nicolas Garcia Montoya, is a young man of 13, who has Down syndrome. His mother, Alejandra Garcia, said that Nico plays football and rides a bicycle in their free time. (Photo: Familia García Montoya)
Nicolas Garcia Montoya, is a young man of 13, who has Down syndrome. His mother, Alejandra Garcia, said that Nico plays football and rides a bicycle in their free time. (Photo Montoya Garica family)

QCOSTARICA – The Government of Canada has asked the Costa Rican family living in Toronto for a plan to explain how they can make less expensive the health care of their youngest son, Nicolas, who has Down Syndrome.

On Monday, York University professor Felipe Montoya told CBC News his application for permanent residency was deemed “inadmissible” because his 13-year-old son Nico’s Down syndrome would be too much of a burden on taxpayers.

On Tuesday, Canadian immigration urged the family not to give up on their application.

The family has until May 3 to respond to a “procedural fairness letter,” which outlines the government’s concerns, according to Nancy Caron, spokesperson for Citizenship and Immigration Canada in an email to CBC news.

The family may still be able to get permanent residency if they can explain how they will cover any costs associated with Nico’s Down syndrome, Caron says in the email.

According to CBC News, Bhaskar Thiagarajan, the president of the Down Syndrome Association of Toronto, said the Montoya family is in an unfortunate situation that many others have gone through. Each year, several families contact his office seeking advice, but he said it’s so difficult he can’t even bring his own sister who has Down syndrome to Canada from India.

“I’ve been with this organization for almost 15 years, and I don’t think I’ve seen a single case where they’ve been able to migrate and come to Canada,” Thiagarajan told CBC News.

Montoya, his wife Alejandra Garcia-Prieto and their two teenage children, Tanya, 17, and Nicolas, 13, have been trying to get permanent residency status for three years.

Source: CBC News