A family from Haiti approach a tent in Saint-Bernard-de-Lacolle, Quebec, stationed by Royal Canadian Mounted Police, as they haul their luggage down Roxham Road in Champlain, N.Y., on August 7, 2017. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Charles Krupa)

Trudeau defends changes to asylum laws that have refugee workers alarmed

Bill would prevent people from seeking asylum in Canada if they already have in U.S.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending a changes to asylum laws included in an omnibus budget bill tabled this week, saying his government is working to ensure Canada’s refugee system is fair for everyone.

The changes would prevent asylum seekers from making refugee claims in Canada if they have made similar claims in certain other countries, including the United States — a move Border Security Minister Bill Blair says is aimed at preventing “asylum-shopping.”

Lawyers and advocates who work with refugees are sounding the alarm about the legal changes, saying they would strip human-rights protections from vulnerable asylum-seekers.

Trudeau says Canada has been seeing larger numbers of refugee claims because of global instability.

He says his priority is to ensure Canadians retain confidence in the country’s asylum system, which means every person who comes to Canada must do so according to the law.

More than 41,000 asylum seekers have crossed into Canada “irregularly” through unofficial paths along the Canada-U.S. border since early 2017.

READ MORE: Budget bill would tighten loophole that encourages irregular border crossings

READ MORE: Free app launches to help immigrants, refugees as they settle in B.C.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Pacific FC puts its best foot forward for inaugural game

Players ‘counting down’ to kick-off day

Rain with a high of 16 C for Tuesday

Plus your weekly forecast

Busy Tuesday for BC Ferries passengers

First sailings to and from Swartz Bay sold out

Saanich community association postpones meeting about University Heights

Gordon Head Residents’ Association president doesn’t know why University Heights project is on hold

Unattended cooking causes fire in Songhees Nation home

Two people treated for injuries, one transported to hospital Monday evening

Easter bombings a response to New Zealand attacks, says Sri Lanka minister

The Islamic State group asserted it was responsible for the nine bombings

Man charged in fatal Salmon Arm church shooting to appear in court

Matrix Savage Gathergood charged with first degree murder, aggravated assault

RCMP looking to retrace steps of woman found dead on Kelowna beach

Caitlin Midori Bradley, a 29-year-old dancer at a Kelowna bar, was originally from Surrey

New commemorative loonie marking ‘progress’ for LGBTQ2 people to be unveiled today

But advocates say it mistakenly suggests equality has been achieved largely as a result of government actions

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

United Way opens grants to help charities tackle social issues

Charities north of the Malahat can apply for grants $2,000 to $20,000

Sri Lanka invokes war-time military powers after nearly 300 killed in Easter bombings

Sri Lanka’s minister of tourism says 39 foreign tourists were killed in the Easter Sunday attacks

Man’s body found in popular Cowichan Valley hiking area

Police say death not suspicious after discovery in Stoney Hill area overlooking Saltspring Island

Most Read