Ocean Lady Human-smuggling

June 18, 2011 by staff 

Ocean Lady Human-smugglingOcean Lady Human-smuggling, This week, the Conservatives did well in one of her campaign promises: to bring back Bill C-49, and to bring back virtually unchanged. Human Traffickers Abuse Prevention System Canada Immigration Act was first introduced in October, but not reach the second reading in Parliament was dissolved for elections in spring. At that time, what citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney, called “tough but fair” remedies to reduce the number of people landing on the shores of Canada to claim refugee status were harshly criticized by MPs opposition and refugee advocates, who denounced the bill as an attack on the rights of refugees.

In particular, critics say the bill-now known as C-4-contravenes the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and obligations under the UN Convention on Refugees.

“It’s hard to understand why the government intends to bring this law of return unchanged when it has been widely condemned by lawyers as a clear violation of our Constitution and a clear violation of international human rights standards,” says Janet Dench, director executive of the Canadian Council for Refugees. “There is no ambiguity about this. It is inconsistent with our international legal obligations.”

Bill C-4 is designed to deter refugees paid smugglers to take them to Canada, and was due in large part by the arrival of the 492 asylum seekers from Sri Lanka on board the MV Sea Sun on the coast of Columbia Britain last August. Last year, another 76 Tamil asylum seekers arrived in BC at the Ocean Lady.

According to the government, Bill C-4 will make it easier to prosecute smugglers who brought them here, and introduce mandatory minimum sentences upon conviction. This will make the ship owners and operators responsible for the use of their vessels in human trafficking.

More controversially, after the Immigration Minister appoints a group of the arrival of two or more people a “smuggling event,” regardless of whether they came by the provisions of the land or by sea or air again for treatment and arrest occurs, which is mandatory for customs officials to stop “massive influx irregular” for a maximum of one year, without judicial review. If an applicant for an “event of contraband” was found to have a genuine refugee claim, he or she will be prevented from obtaining permanent residence or sponsor family members to join them for five years.

“Canadians gave us a strong mandate to prevent abuse of our generous immigration system,” said Kenney to reintroduce bill on Thursday. “Canadians have told us that this abuse of our generosity is a real problem that must be stopped.”

Advocates for refugees say that goes too far, and that the arrest without warrant for one year violates the Charter right which applies to asylum for refugees to a judge within 24 hours.

“The government described it as being anti-smuggling, but people who suffer most are refugees,” says Dench. “They would be detained for up to one year, and even accepted as refugees will be held in suspended animation for five years without the right to travel, to meet with their families or move on with their lives.”

The number of asylum seekers arriving by boat rarely more than one percent of the total number of applicants who arrive by other means, every year, says Peter Showler, a former member of the Immigration and Refugee Board who now heads the Forum refugees at the University of Ottawa.

“Conservatives are creating a kind of slander people on the boats, using words such as” contraband “and” criminal “to the Canadian public does not see the refugees as human beings,” Showler said. “They do not become refugees for fear of persecution, become something akin to the crime or terrorists.”

These objections are not critics contend with the immigration system, such as Martin Collacott, former ambassador of Sri Lanka and one of the principles behind the new Center for Immigration Policy Reform. Collacott is Bill C-4 as a balanced effort to reach a real problem and would like to see more of it.

“The problem is people who use the services of smugglers are making to management in the Canadian immigration system,” says Collacott. “They’re kidding, and we have allowed this to happen because of a fairly active refugee lobby which argues that we must keep our doors open.”

Dench says that Canada’s commitment to the protection of refugees appears to be decreasing. As evidence, points to her ownanlysis of data from the Immigration and Refugee Board, noting that while there has been a small increase in refugees resettled by the government in recent years, there has been a decline in the number of refugees accepted for permanent resident status.

“When we look at the number 2005 to 2010, and divide by the different classes, we see that in 2005, 14 percent of the refugees were permanent resident status, and by 2010 were reduced to nine percent. “

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