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Ukrainian newcomers taught about Canadian rights, rules to protect themselves

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An information session for Ukrainian newcomers about their legal rights and regulations in Canada was held at MacEwan University on Saturday.

In the last week, some 1,100 Ukrainians arrived in the country, on top of thousands more before them. According to Alberta's government, more than 26,000 Ukrainians have settled in the province since Russia invaded.

The Free Store For Ukrainian Newcomers was set up in Edmonton to help equip those arriving with basic necessities and household items – and on Saturday, important information about living in Canada, too.

The group partnered with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress in Alberta and Edmonton Police Service to put on the afternoon event, which covered the topics of personal rights and responsibilities, renting housing, rights and obligations of workers and employers, driving rules, and the police service's non-emergency line.

“We are only like six months here in Canada and would like to know more about laws and regulations, how to rent an apartment, how to drive, maybe learn some interesting new information for us,” Mila Yazvinska, who arrived in Canada with her husband in October, told CTV News Edmonton.

They were two of 41 people who participated in the free event on Saturday.

While many Ukrainian newcomers have been met with generosity in their new home, some have been "taken advantage of," according to EPS.

“We want to give them some knowledge and background in how to avoid that and if it happens, how they can come and talk to the police," Const. Amanda Trenchard explained. "But we’re hoping first that we give them the knowledge so that it doesn’t happen to them."

The groups that organized the event said it was so successful they may hold another in the future.

With files from CTV News Edmonton's Marek Tkach 

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