MP Jenny Kwan Statement on World Refugee Day 2019
Canadians will remember the image of Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy who drowned in the Mediterranean Sea during the Syrian refugee crisis. That initiated a call from Canadians to show compassion in the midst of a global forced displacement crisis. But since 2015, the Liberals have gone from #WelcomeToCanada to ramming through significant changes hidden in an omnibus budget bill to try and stop refugees from making a claim in Canada.
On this, World Refugee Day, we learn that the US has now detained thousands of children in concentration camps. Children are now being denied access to even so much as a toothbrush while in these facilities. At least 7 children have died. There have been reports of sexual violence. LGBTQ2+ asylum claimants are being held indefinitely in solitary confinement. Canada, and the international community, recognize that as an act of torture. The US is now re-opening the very sites that the US once used to detain Japanese-Americans during WWII on the basis of racist assumptions. Yet the Liberals and Conservatives continue to pretend that the US is somehow still a safe country for asylum seekers.Read more
On March 15, in response to reports of new information about the Safe Third Country Agreement and Canada, I made the following statement:
“In January 2018, internal memos and briefings provided to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, informed that, ‘with the recent influx of asylum seekers to Canada, the Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA) is no longer working as intended.’ Of course the STCA is not working ‘as intended’.
As I’ve been saying since January 2017, the United States under President Donald Trump is not a safe country for asylum seekers. The entire agreement is predicated upon the notion that Canada and the United States have at least comparable, if not equal, policies and procedures around refugee determination.
Migrant children continue to be taken from their parents and placed in detention. We saw videos of children as young as 3 years old being ordered into court, alone, for their own deportation hearings. There are children that are still lost in the system that might never see their parents again. This is inhumane treatment that flies in the face of Canadian and International Law on the rights of the child.
Gang/Cartel violence and Gender Based Violence are no longer considered grounds for making an asylum claim in the United States. This move intentionally targets Central and South American asylum seekers and again goes against Canadian and International law.
The only change that can be made to the STCA that respects the humanity of asylum seekers and allows Canada to live up to its domestic and international obligations is to suspend the agreement.
Suspending the STCA will allow asylum claimants to make safe, orderly entries into Canada at authorized ports of entry to make an asylum claim. This will improve safety, security, and efficiency throughout Canada’s border communities while providing the respect and dignity that human beings fleeing violence are entitled to under Canadian and International Law.”
My March Mobile Office is on 14th Thursday, 2-4 pm at Ray Cam Community Centre. Please swing by and say hi!
I’d love to chat about issues facing our community and answer your questions about federal government services and programs. No appointment necessary.
關慧貞流動辦公室面見市民，3月14日下午2-4時在Ray Cam社區中心， 920 E Hastings St。
My Winter 2018 newsletter is now available!
In this newsletter, I discuss new bills promoting Canada's diversity, Parent/Grandparent Reunification Efforts, the Nanjing Massacre Commemorative Day, and other issues. If you have anything that you would like to let me know about these or any other subjects, please don't hesitate to contact me.Read more
My Fall 2018 newsletter is now available!
In this newsletter, I discuss the Safe Third Country Agreement, the new zoning of Chinatown, Kinder Morgan, rail noise complaints, and other issues. If you have anything that you would like to let me know about these or any other subjects, please don't hesitate to contact me.Read more
On January 29th, one year ago, this country was shaken by a senseless act of violence. A young man radicalized by white nationalist ideology entered the Great Mosque of Quebec City and shot twenty-five people, killing six.Read more
My Winter 2017 newsletter is now available!
In this newsletter, I discuss the housing crisis, the future of Chinatown and the work I have been doing as Critic for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, among other issues. If you have anything that you would like to let me know about these or any other subjects, please don't hesitate to contact me.
On Tuesday, me and my team got out of the office with my Mobile Office at the Hastings Community Centre. I had the good fortune to meet a number of you to talk about the messages I can bring to Ottawa, and what we can do to make Ottawa work for East Van.
I'd like to take the opportunity to thank Hastings Community Centre for providing the space and promoting my visit, you made me feel at home. Your hard work and dedication to the community of Hastings-Sunrise are truly appreciated.
My next Mobile Office will be at the Mount Pleasant Community Centre on Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at 2 pm. I would love to see you there.
Today, I was honoured to attend the Remembrance Day ceremonies at the Grandview Cenotaph and the Chinese Canadian War Memorial in remembrance of the veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice in answering the call to fight for our freedoms. It is heartwarming to see that despite the rain, many people attended the two ceremonies to honour the veterans. We shall remember them!