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Canada's PM And Immigration Minister Welcome Arriving Syrian Refugees. Roger Algase

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For those who are interested in comparative and international refugee policies and related immigration laws, it would be interesting to note that, in a marked contrast to the approach toward Syrian refugees that has been adopted by many US governors, lawmakers and presidential candidates, Canada is pursuing a quite different policy. The Globe and Mail reports that on December 10, the first planeload of the Canadian government's airlift which is expected to bring 25,000 Syrian refugees to Canada by the end of February arrived at Pearson Airport in Toronto.

They were greeted by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the ministers of immigration, health and defense, among other officials, including (in what appears to be a typically Canadian show of tolerance and harmony among people with differing views), opposition immigration critics.

Prime Minister Trudeau greeted the 163 refugees on the plane as follows:

"This is a wonderful night. where we get to show a planeload of new Canadians what Canada is all about, we get to show the world how to open our hearts and welcome in people who are fleeing extraordinarily difficult situations."

Trudeau added:

"Tonight, they step off the plane as refugees, but they walk out of this terminal as permanent residents of Canada with social insurance numbers, with health cards, and with and opportunity to become full Canadians."

He also said:

"This is something that we are able to do in this country because we define a Canadian not by skin color or a language or a religion or a background but by a shared set of values, aspirations, hopes and dreams that not just Canadians but people around the world share."

See:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...ticle27708493/

These words are well worth taking to heart among elected officials and other leaders in a certain country located just to the south of the Canadian border, a country which was built on the same ideals of tolerance and shared humanity, but which now appears to be moving in a radically different direction with regard to refugee and other related immigration policies.

If the US continues in this direction, Canadian refugee law and policy could conceivably become a subject of more than merely scholarly or academic interest to many Americans in the not too distant future.
____________________________
Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. He has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from many different parts of the world and religious backgrounds obtain work visas and green cards for more than 35 years. Roger's email address is algaselex@gmail.com

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Updated 12-11-2015 at 02:09 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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Comments

  1. Unregistered222's Avatar
    But Roger,

    Canada has far more elaborate and sophisticated process for vetting out security risks than US does. Remember, Canada accepted more Chechen refugees than US did and never ran into Boston marathon problem like US did. Their methods of vetting refugees are superior and can be trusted, as opposed to the methodology US has.

    I am sure that Syrian refugees that are allowed in Canada are true refugees, who should be welcomed and greeted. I applaud Canada for running leak-proof refugee screening program.

    Too bad US does not have the refugee screening process like Canada has. Meanwhile, US should accept (like Israel did) their inability to distinguish between real refugees and terrorists and stop admission until the security screening process is brought up to adequate standards.
  2. ImmigrationLawBlogs's Avatar
    If Canada is doing a better refugee screening job than the US, can't we try to learn something from them, instead of just throwing up our hands, as some of our politicians are proposing, and saying that effective screening is impossible?

    Political will plays a big role in this. Canada, of example, did not always have such an open attitude toward refugees. During WW2, as I remember reading, Canada took in only 5,000 Jewish refugees in total.

    I also read that during that period, the Canadian immigration minister was asked how many Jewish refugees that country would be prepared to accept.

    His answer, according to a book on this subject that I read with the same title was: "None would be too many."

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law
    Updated 12-11-2015 at 02:09 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs
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