Bill C-31 threatens increased asylum seekers in Canadian jails
Canada, 25th April: A series of reforms have been introduced by Canada immigration to stop human smugglers from misusing immigration norms.
Aimed to protect Canada immigration system from human smugglers, the legislation has been aptly named Bill C-31.
Bill C-31- Protecting Canadian Immigration System Act—The new Bill C-31 is a combination of rules from Bill C-11 and Bill C-4. Bill C-11 is a Balanced Refugee Reform Act and Bill C-4 is for shielding Canada immigration system from human smugglers.
It may be worth mentioned that both these bills were rejected earlier when the Conservatives were not in the power.
Incarceration risk for refugee claimants--In what is being called as one of the biggest overhauls of immigration system of Canada, Bill C-31 would push risk of incarceration for refugee claimants in Canadian jails.
Tories claim the bill to be a latest effort by Canadian government to crackdown on unscrupulous human smugglers as well as immigration queue jumpers playing with social safety net of the nation.
Bill C-31 was announced by Canadian government in February this year.
If the proposed amendments become effective, it will endanger the lives of refugee claimants in Canada.
Irregular arrivals shall be at a risk of getting incarcerated without any review for a period of up to 12 months. Moreover, they will not be allowed to apply for Canada permanent residency or for offering sponsorship to their family members for a period of five years.
Many might have to stay in provincial jails while waiting for hearing of their cases.
New pattern of punishment for refugees—Bill C-31 is nothing short of a new pattern for punishing refugees in Canada.
As per the bill, all immigrants shall be under obligation to provide biometric details including fingerprints. There will be extremely short time of just 15 days for refugee hearings.
And refugees will be compelled to find shelter, seek a legal counselor and make preparations for delivering their stories of sufferings(including violence, loss, hardship, trauma etc.) before the IRB(Immigration and Refugee Board) during their first hearing itself.
There will be inhuman punishments for those coming to Canada through illegal processes.
And the worst sufferers will be queer individuals and their families and women as well as those fleeing from what Canada designates as ‘safe nations’ (countries considered as Canada’s trading partners).