HANSARD: QP - Addressing systematic racism in IRCC

House of Commons Hansard #237 of the 44th Parliament, 1st Session
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
Oral Question
October 23rd, 2023 / 2:45 p.m.

Jenny Kwan Vancouver East, BC

Mr. Speaker, The Auditor General has reinforced findings from two Pollara reports of racist outcomes in Canada's immigration system. Regional disparities continue to create longer processing times for those in sub-Saharan Africa. Meanwhile, new AI tools discriminatingly double wait times for Haitian citizens. The Liberals said they would address regional disparities in 2016, but the Auditor General found they have done nothing. This is outrageous. People's lives are hanging in the balance.

Will the government take immediate action to put in place an independent ombudsperson to end the systemic racism in IRCC?

Marc Miller Minister of Immigration

Mr. Speaker, I think it is important not to deny the reality that systemic racism exists within IRCC, as well as the fact that it exists throughout the public service. We need to address it. It has real impacts on people who are looking to come to Canada. There are also some of the facts the member has stated.

I would note that, thankfully, the Auditor General produced a report that will help as a guide. I have asked my deputy minister to continue her work in fighting systemic racism. I would also note that some of the thresholds have gone up in western Africa since the reference point, but it is not enough; we have to do better.

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