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IN THE NEWS: CBC - NDP MP immigration critic pushes back on new foreign worker regulations

Jenny Kwan, the NDP MP for Vancouver East and the critic for Multiculturalism, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship says, it's a good first step, but the changes don't go far enough to protect all migrant workers. She wants the government to provide migrant workers with open work permits and landed status when they come to Canada.

"If they're good enough to work here, aren't they good enough to stay?" asked Kwan.

Kwan says the new regulation doesn't help the 27 foreign workers she's currently trying to get open permits for.

2019 Budget Speech

Mr. Speaker, people in Vancouver East expect their government to make life affordable, sustainable and fair for all Canadians. They expect their government to be on their side.

    In Vancouver East, I have heard from my constituents time and time again that we need real measures to make life affordable for Canadians, that we need immediate and urgent action to protect our climate and environment.

    On behalf of the constituents of Vancouver East, I have been strongly advocating for measures such as affordable housing, public universal pharmacare, environmental protections, climate action and tax fairness. Instead, we now have a country faced with many crises.

 

MP Jenny Kwan Statement on the Federal Government Quietly Offering Settlement to Halt Lawsuits Over Parent Immigration Program

On January 28, the IRCC website opened to accept Interest to Sponsor applications from family members wishing to apply for family reunification under the Parents/Grandparents Program. Within 7 minutes, the application process was shut down. 11 minutes after the application opened, IRCC announced via Twitter that the annual limit had been reached and the application was closed. 

The media revealed that a number of individuals who were not able to submit an application to reunite with their loved ones under the parents/grandparents reunification process filled a lawsuit against the government. The Federal Liberal government then quietly settled with the litigants by offering them 70 coveted spots in the parents/grandparents sponsorship program. 

The fact that the government quietly offered a side deal to 70 families who threatened to sue the Liberal government is indicative that the process is inherently flawed and unfair. With this side deal, the Minister is effectively telling Canadians that you have to take the government to court to be treated fairly. It should not have come to this. All families want to do is be reunited with their loved ones. They should not have to go through such pain and anguish to be with their parents or grandparents. They certainly should not have to threaten to sue the government. Our process should be one that is open, accountable and fair. 

Sadly the Liberal government’s handling of this file has been deplorable from the beginning – whether it’s following the Conservative’s process that allowed people with resources to get in front of the line, or the Liberal’s process based on the luck of the draw lottery system, or this flawed and unfair online system, all have been a miserable failure.

It is time for the Liberals to do what is right: allow families to make their applications in a fair and orderly fashion by lifting the arbitrary cap on family reunification.​

IN THE NEWS: Star - Aside from ’nice words’, Liberals aren’t far from Conservatives on immigration, says NDP critic

“The Liberal government can say all these nice words and make themselves sound different from the Conservatives,” Kwan said in a phone interview. “But while the Conservatives’ policies targeted immigrants, for instance with Bill C-24 (Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act) as second-class citizens, the Liberals’ fixes are just creating new problems.”

On Irregular Border Crossings

for 15 months now I have been raising the issue around irregular border crossings in this House, at committee, and in the public. As members may remember, it started with your granting my request for an emergency debate on this very subject in January 2017.

Since that time, we have seen the influx in irregular border crossings and asylum claims. Back on April 10, 2017, at the immigration and citizenship committee, I moved a motion for the committee to study the issue of irregular crossings. Unfortunately, the Liberal members of the committee saw fit to adjourn debate on my motion repeatedly. Not only did they want to study the issue: they refused to even have a debate on the need to study the situation.

Budget Speech 2018

The inequality gap between Canada's wealthiest and the rest of Canadians has never been greater in our country. According to the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, as of 2016, Canada's 100 highest paid CEOs now earn over 209 times more than the average Canadian worker. This year, Canada's CEOs could have stopped working at 10:57 a.m. on January 2 and taken the rest of the year off and they would still make as much as an average Canadian this year. Members can think about that for a minute.

Latin American heritage month

Close to 40,000 people in the Lower Mainland have Latin American heritage. The community is vibrant and diverse, and every year there are plenty of wonderful events and activities highlighting and celebrating their culture. This year, from June 27 to July 8, Vancouver will celebrate Latin American Week. Carnaval del Sol, a free family-friendly festival, is always one of the biggest attractions. This year will be the 10th annual Carnaval del Sol, and will feature close to 400 performers showcasing singers, dancers, bands, and incredible food. Latin American Week will give people the opportunity to attend cooking classes, dancing classes, a fashion show, and plenty of arts and crafts displays highlighting the diversity of Vancouver's Latin American community. From August 23 to September 2, Vancouver will have its 16th annual Latin American Film Festival showcasing contemporary Latin American and Latin Canadian filmmaking. I encourage all Canadians to check similar events in their communities or in communities nearby, as festivals and events like these happen across Canada each year. If there is not one in their community, I invite people to come to Vancouver and check out ours.

 

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