A Dieppe family from Tunisia is breathing a sigh of relief after a deportation order has been lifted.
The Ben Cheikh Brahim family was informed Tuesday of the decision by the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada.
The family has been living in New Brunswick for three years, but had been asked to leave voluntarily by Sept. 5 after their refugee claim was rejected and their appeal was denied.
Marie-Claire Roy, a friend of the family of three, says they're all thankful for the community support they've received and are happy with the decision.
“The daughter said, 'Now I can live again.' She was very fearful of what was waiting for them in Tunisia if they had to go back," Roy told CBC News on Wednesday.
The family says it has faced persecution in Tunisia after converting to Christianity from Islam many years ago.
"Usif told me, 'I will never leave New Brunswick, this is my home now.'”
The family will still have to apply in October for protection for persons at risk, and then for permanent residency, said Roy.