How to act if refugees come to Canada on a boat

What To Do If People Come To Canada On A Boat And Ask To Be Admitted As Refugees (via funkaoshi):

1. Don’t panic!

Take a deep breath.

2. Remember that there is a process in place to deal with this issue.

According to Citizenship and Immigration Canada:

The Canadian refugee system has two main parts:
– the Refugee and Humanitarian Resettlement Program, for people seeking protection from outside Canada; and
– the In-Canada Asylum Program for people making refugee protection claims from within Canada.

If you can see the boat full of people from your house, that means they will likely be processed under the In-Canada Asylum Program. To calm your fears, Citizenship and Immigration Canada further explains that:

Refugees come from around the world and many make their claims in Canada….The asylum program works to provide refugee protection to people in Canada who are at risk of torture, or cruel or unusual punishment in their home countries.

Not everyone is eligible to seek asylum. For example, people convicted of serious criminal offences and people who have had previous refugee claims denied by Canada are not accepted.

3. Don’t kill asylum seekers.

Even if you are still alarmed after reading about Canada’s refugee process, don’t kill these strange newcomers, regardless of what the Toronto Sun helpfully suggests.  Killing asylum seekers is a violation of their rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

If you look carefully at your copy of the Charter, you’ll notice that some rights are only for Canadian citizens (like the right to vote, article 3) and some rights are for “everyone” (like the right to life, liberty and security of the person, article 7).

Do asylum seekers and refugee claimants who arrive in Canada on a leaky boat count as “everyone” under Canadian law? The Supreme Court of Canada answered this very question in their April 4, 1985 decision in Singh v. Minister of Employment and Immigration. According to the Supreme Court, foreign nationals in Canada have Charter rights, so killing them would be illegal.

Read the rest at Kanakaweb

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Canadian White Privilege: Having the Canadian government consider you Canadian

A black and Muslim Canadian woman, Suaad Hagi Mohamud, was falsely arrested in Kenya for identity fraud and stranded for three months, because both Kenyan and Canadian officials claimed that she was not a Canadian citizen. Even mainstream Canadians blamed the Harper government for discriminating against her because she was not white.

Now Mohamud is suing the Canadian government.

Kenyan stranding triggered by skin colour: Mohamud:

A Toronto woman who was stranded in Kenya over false claims she was an impostor said she believes the colour of her skin played a role in her ordeal.

In an exclusive interview with the CBC’s Diana Swain, Suaad Hagi Mohamud was asked if she thought things would have been different if she were white.

“I wouldn’t be stopped at the Kenyan airport if I’m a white,” Mohamud said.

“The Canadian High Commission wouldn’t be treating me the way they treat me. If I’m a white person, I wouldn’t be there in one day. I wouldn’t have missed the flight.”

Mohamud, 31, who was visiting her mother in Kenya, had been stranded in the country since May after Kenyan authorities said she didn’t look like the picture in her passport photo.

Mohamud, who filed a $2.5 million lawsuit against the federal government on Friday, said the reaction by officials to her situation was “really frustrating” because “deep inside I thought we all the same.”

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