This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Roma Haven in Canada

"The Canadian government designated Hungary as a safe country in 2012. These figures [refugee acceptance rate increase to 20 percent in 2013 from 2 percent in 2009-10, and 35 percent in 2014, then 68 percent in 2015] show that Hungary is not, in fact, a safe country for hundreds of recognized refugees."
Sean Rehaag, Osgoode Hall Law School professor; immigration and refugee law

"Everyone grew up with this concept of Gypsies being this nomadic, bohemian subculture and they had a hard time connecting: who are these people coming from Europe claiming racially motivated violence and lack of state protection?"
"A lot of people have been educated about that now."
"Before, Roma were coming here [to Canada] and they didn't really understand exactly what it was that characterized a refugee ... They've learned that if you're coming, you'd better bring evidence with you."
Gina Csanyi-Robah, founder, Canadian Romani Alliance

How's that for irony? A minority group of traditionally discriminated-against people in Europe, forced to flee oppression and racism where in the country of their birth where they have lived for centuries there is no future for them and for their children. Where employment is rarely granted them, where their children are subject to persecution, poverty and blatant inequality and as a group they are held in universal scorn. Leading the Romani to attempt to escape their lack of human rights in Europe.

Hoping to be able to migrate to North America to aspire toward a fair future. While at the same time, Muslims from across Africa and the Middle East and South Asia flee oppression and conflict in their countries of birth, seeking haven in countries of the West, flooding Europe in a mad scramble to find humanitarian support, and sending European countries that become their targets into a frenzy of coping and hoping to deflect their arrival.

Canadian authorities had some problems digesting the reality that in civilized Europe, Roma have been and continue to the present to be persecuted and demonized. Accordingly, the acceptance rate for refugee applications was dismally low. Complicated by the fact that the would-be migrants seemed to have no idea that with their applications supporting documentation of origin and citizenship would be required for full consideration to their claims.

"Canada's reformed asylum system continues to ensure that all eligible claimants -- regardless of their country of origin -- have access to a full, fact-based hearing before the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada", stated Nancy Caron, a spokeswoman for the IRB. The growing evidence of persecution of the ethnic Roma minority in countries like Hungary has led to the new position of the Canadian government and the IRB in accepting applicants.

Hungary was placed on a list of countries considered to be highly unlikely to produce genuine refugees, as late as 2012, leading to claims emanating from Hungary seen to be ineligible. Claimants awaiting processing would be ineligible for health care or work permits, and once rejected they could not appeal the decision. Now, the Canadian government has placed billboards and distributed flyers in Roma communities abroad instructing potential claimants that if they lack valid reasons to make refugee application, they would be deported.

As a result, fewer claimants now make applications; diminished from 2,000 yearly in 2009-11, to the current several hundred at the present time. Which total receive a much higher acceptance rate, with their applications now fully documented.

Acceptance rates for top 20 refugee source countries
Korea (N)0%0%
Sri Lanka58%51%
Source: Immigration and Refugee Board

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