Wednesday, April 1, 2020

An El Salvadoran woman challenges Canadian refugee law that bars their entry by land

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An El Salvadoran woman (identified only as E) and her two daughters were rebuffed under the Canada-U.S. Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA) on arrival at the Canada-U.S. border to seek refuge and their entry by land was barred.  She challenged this Canadian refugee law that bars their entry by land.

She is not what she will do if Canada turns her away and do not want to enter Canada illegally.

It is the first time a federal court has heard a legal objection to the law with a real-life case at its center and granted a suspension order allowing E and her daughters to remain in Canada with her husband.

Earlier, the 2004 agreement has been challenged in court before. A judge struck it down in 2007 but was overturned on appeal.

The denial of E’s refugee claim may strike down a Canadian law that has been criticized as the motivating factor for thousands of asylum seekers crossing the border illegally.

As per Mrs. E, they fled El Salvador to escape the gang whose members raped her and terrorized her family.

US is not a safe country and that it has become less so after President Donald Trump gave immigration officers broader powers to detain and deport people  is argued by Lawyer Prasanna Balasundaram and his colleagues at Toronto’s Downtown Legal Services, along with interveners:

  • the Canadian Council for Refugees,
  • Amnesty International and
  • the Canadian Council of Churches.

They contend the STCA is discriminatory and violative of Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

As per Ahmed Hussen, Immigration and Refugee Minister, the agreement facilitates orderly processing of refugees and that the United States remains a safe country.

Bernie Derible said that there has been no change to their government’s position.

Gang violence is one of the main reasons many people are fleeing El Salvador and Central American neighbor Honduras.

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