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.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Canada's Asylum Seeker Woes

"Even the numbers we're getting from the federal government show us that the situation is different, there's going to be more asylum seekers, so we need a new plan."
"This is not about money, this is about saying that Quebec can do its part, but our resources are completely saturated and we can't do more."
Quebec Immigration Minister David Heurtel
More than 25,000 asylum seekers crossed into Quebec from the U.S. in 2017, according to the Quebec government. Their projections show that number could grow in 2018. (Charles Krupa/Associated Press)

"The current provisions on medical inadmissibility are over 40 years old and are clearly not in line with Canadian values or our government's vision of inclusion."
"These newcomers can contribute and are not a burden to Canada. These newcomers have the ability to help grow our economy and enrich our social fabric."
Canadian federal Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen

"We at committee could not get good cost data."
"Right now [Hussen] is going to have to look at this, the minister of health will have to look at this, the provinces and territories are going to have to look at this and hopefully in a year or two they are going to recognize that this is not a significant cost."
Liberal MP Rob Oliphant, chair, Common citizenship and immigration committee

"My concern is that the federal government is downloading costs to the provinces without a real plan to deal with that and that seems like something they should have done and considered before they made this announcement."
Michelle Rempel, Conservative immigration critic
An RCMP officer escorts a woman and a child claiming to be from Yemen as they cross the U.S.-Canada border in Hemmingford, Que. on Sunday, March 5, 2017. (Graham Hughes / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
The government of Quebec feels the federal government must invest in a plan to help deal with the influx of migrants pouring across the border from the United States to Canada, a number that has tripled from 2017 and is being forecast to increase to even greater numbers with better weather. Quebec's immigration minister speaks of the potential of seeing up to 400 crossings daily in the summer months, in comparison to the 250 seen last year.

Quebec's resources are being strained; in addition to front-line services, health care and education requirements are stretching its budget. Through both legal and illegal means last year 25,000 asylum seekers entered Quebec, representing 50 percent of all asylum cases in Canada. The province's 1,840 places for asylum seekers in Montreal is 70 percent occupied, leaving scant place for additional illegal crossers in the temporary shelters in the city, much less for those who enter the province by legal means.

Anecdotal stories of Canada's generous welcome, fuelled by Prime Minister Trudeau's stirring Twitter rejoinder in virtual signalling, responding to President Trump's threat to rid the U.S. of its millions of illegal residents has resulted in people arriving in the U.S. then immediately heading for a popular irregular crossing between the New York-Quebec border. Of the 50,000 people who entered Canada last year as migrants, 20,000 crossed irregularly. They enter Quebec but plan to go on further to other areas of the country.

A reflection of what has been seen occurring in Europe, where Greece and Italy have become the entry points with the intention of migrants to spurt on further to Germany or Sweden where they are assured of a welcome and sturdy social services supports. All of what is happening in Canada reflects the 'progressive' values of the Liberal government of Justin Trudeau. Which is now busy overturning decades of restricted entry to Canada for those with intellectual or physical disabilities.

According to Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen, himself a former immigrant to Canada from Somalia, Canada will no longer reject permanent resident applications from anyone with serious health conditions or disabilities. Previously, these rejections were built upon the acknowledgement that the country's universal health care system was under strain as it was, and needed no additional extraordinary burdens.

Of 177,000 economic immigrants that Canada admits yearly, roughly 1,000 have been affected by the policy of medical inadmissibility. The total number of immigrants that Canada has accepted in the last several years has risen to 300,000.

An asylum seeker is questioned by an RCMP officer as he crosses the border into Canada from the United States on Aug. 21, 2017 near Champlain, N.Y.    The Canadian Press

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