Vancouver witnessed a historic moment when almost thirty fresh Canadians coming from almost fifteen countries took oath of Canadian citizenship for Children of Immigrants after a law was proposed by the legislation that the children can apply for Canadian citizenship apart from their parents as well.
Canadian citizenship for Children of Immigrants- What is the new law about Canadian citizenship all about?
According to a new proposed legislation given by Senator Victor Ho, Canada will allow minors to apply for citizenship here but there won’t be any compulsory intervention of the parents. This is already been followed by countries like Norway and Denmark that is presently being taken up by Canada as well. This law, however, will be applicable in case of certain specific circumstances such as if the children below the age of 18 years are:
- Asylum hunters.
- Separated from their parents.
- Having criminal background.
- Unwilling to go back to the home countries like India and China, where dual citizenship is not possible.
New Law to Benefit Children of Immigrants awaiting Citizenship
Till date, Canadian citizenship for Children of Immigrants could be taken if the children were above the age of 18 years or were part of the immigration application of the parents or guardians, whichever is applicable. However, with these supposed amendments in the law, several thousands of children, who are foreign-born, will be benefited, especially in the provinces like Ontario and B.C.
Earlier to This amendment, ‘compassionate’ ground for applying Canadian citizenship in case of minors was available but this was hardly used
This particular change in the Canadian citizenship law came into being as a result of the escalating numbers of minors, who are estranged from their families and looking for asylum in Canada. The present figure of such children in Canada is almost 3400 that increased to the extent of almost 50% in the year 2016. The ‘compassionate’ ground for applying Canadian citizenship in case of minors was available but this was hardly used. The self-application process can be undertaken by minors in case of the following cases:
- The children had entered Canada without their parents and are usually more prone to trafficking and exploitation.
- The minors had been victims of child abuse by their parents or guardians themselves and are in ‘protective custody’.
- Any minor who have fled from their homes and are leading lives like that of orphans.
- Children, whose parents are not eligible for Canadian citizenship even though they are permanent residents because of language problems and hence are not able to become Canadian citizens but the children are very much capable of becoming the same.
- Young adults having criminal history.
This change will also help Children of Immigrants where parents not willing to surrender citizenship of Parent Country
Apart from these cases, there is also the provision of applying separately for Canadian citizenship in a specific case like if the parents are not willing to lose their homeland passport and they do not want to become permanent Canadian citizens. Under such situations as well, the youths can very well apply for Canadian citizenship on their own.
These modifications in the Citizenship Act of Canada proposed by Senator Ho were strongly backed by B.C.Senator Mobina Jaffer and were also appreciated by immigration lawyer of Vancuover, Richard Kurland, who was also a part of the drafting process of the proposal.