CBC: Her parents, siblings and baby nephew are trapped in Gaza. Canada doesn't consider them 'immediate family’

CBC: Her parents, siblings and baby nephew are trapped in Gaza. Canada doesn't consider them 'immediate family’

The NDP is calling on the federal government to expand its definition of immediate family for Palestinians, and create special immigration measures to get more people safely out of Gaza and reunited with their loved ones in Canada. 

"Time is of the essence. As we speak, people's lives are in jeopardy and we need the government to take action," NDP MP Jenny Kwan said during a Monday press conference, which also included an impassioned plea from Alsaafin.

Asked by reporters Tuesday whether Canada would consider expanding its eligibility criteria, Immigration Minister Marc Miller said: "We have tried our utmost, whenever there's a configuration of a family unit that doesn't fall within our current definitions, to be as flexible as possible to try and get people out.”

Globe: Publisher Jimmy Lai’s son presses Joly to publicly call for father’s release ahead of trial

Globe: Publisher Jimmy Lai’s son presses Joly to publicly call for father’s release ahead of trial

Jimmy Lai, a British citizen and publisher of Hong Kong’s now-defunct Apple Daily newspaper, was arrested and charged in December, 2020, under a national-security law imposed by Beijing. Apple Daily shuttered permanently six months later, and other top executives were also arrested.

Ostensibly intended to target secession, subversion and terrorism, the national-security law contains vaguely defined offences that critics say effectively criminalize dissent and opposition. The elder Mr. Lai, who turns 76 on Friday, was accused of conspiring with others to call for sanctions or blockades against Hong Kong or China, or engage in hostile activities.

He faces the possibility of life in prison if convicted. His trial is scheduled to begin on Dec. 18. He plans to plead not guilty.


Globe: NDP Calls For Canada to Bring Extended Family of Canadians Safety Out of Gaza

Globe: NDP Calls For Canada to Bring Extended Family of Canadians Safety Out of Gaza

Canadians whose relatives are struggling to survive in the Gaza Strip are losing faith the federal government will step in to save the lives of their loved ones, and are joining an NDP call for Canada to help get their extended family members out of the embattled territory.

NDP immigration critic Jenny Kwan asked the minister Monday to formalize the process of getting extended family members out of the embattled territory.
“I assume that the government is doing something on a one-off basis and perhaps that’s why some people managed to get to safety. But that’s not good enough, it is not the right approach,” Kwan said at a news conference Monday.

Canadian Press: Calls grow to get Canadian extended families out of Gaza

Canadian Press: Calls grow to get Canadian extended families out of Gaza

NDP immigration critic Jenny Kwan asked the minister Monday to formalize the process of getting extended family members out of the embattled territory.

“I assume that the government is doing something on a one-off basis and perhaps that’s why some people managed to get to safety. But that’s not good enough, it is not the right approach,” Kwan said at a press conference Monday.

In an open letter signed by the entire NDP caucus, Kwan urged the government to facilitate the evacuation and reunification of extended family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents from Gaza.

“The situation in Gaza is getting so desperate that literally, as we speak, people’s lives are being lost,” she told reporters at a press conference outside the House of Commons.

CTV: 'Time is of the essence': Canadian government urged to introduce special immigration measures to help those with families in Gaza

CTV: 'Time is of the essence': Canadian government urged to introduce special immigration measures to help those with families in Gaza

The NDP made the announcement Monday during a press conference and in an open letter to the federal immigration and foreign affairs ministers. The party is calling for special immigration measures that would facilitate the evacuation of extended family members of Canadians and permanent residents in Gaza.

NDP immigration critic Jenny Kwan said the Canadian government needs to create special rules for Palestinians as they did for Syrian, Afghan and Ukrainian refugees.
According to Global Affairs, about 600 people have been able to leave the war-torn territory through the Rafah border crossing between Gaza and Egypt. Those who left are Canadians, Canadian permanent residents and people who meet Ottawa's strict definition of an eligible family member, with exceptions. Eligible family members are spouses, partners or dependent children. Parents, siblings, or adult children over the age of 22 are excluded from this definition.

Globe: Israel-Gaza: NDP calls for special immigration measures to reunite Palestinian families in Canada

Globe: Israel-Gaza: NDP calls for special immigration measures to reunite Palestinian families in Canada

Speaking in the House of Commons on Monday, NDP MP Jenny Kwan described Gaza as “the most dangerous place for children in the world” and called for special immigration measures so that Palestinian families in Canada could be reunited with their loved ones. Minister of Foreign Affairs Melanie Joly responded by saying that “too many” children and women have lost their lives, adding that 130 Canadians were able to cross the Rafah border on Sunday night.

Globe: Mayors push for more funding following disappointing government fall economic statement

Globe: Mayors push for more funding following disappointing government fall economic statement

NDP MP Jenny Kwan took issue with the fact that even the $1-billion in funding that was in the update is not budgeted until after April 1, 2025.

“People are living in tent encampments, being evicted from their homes or trapped paying sky-high rent and the Liberals continue to delay and disappoint in their fall economic statement,” she said during Question Period, describing the funding timeline as “absurd and completely out of touch.”

Mr. Fraser responded, saying existing programs are currently available.

“What we’ve done in the fall economic statement is demonstrate our long-term commitment,” he said.

Time Colonist: B.C. MP Jenny Kwan tables petition for foreign agent registry

Time Colonist: B.C. MP Jenny Kwan tables petition for foreign agent registry

A national registry for foreign agents should be expedited, says Vancouver East Member of Parliament Jenny Kwan, after tabling a petition in Parliament Tuesday.

“Foreign actors will try to coerce, co-op, reorient, neutralize, or even silence our voices. We must not allow foreign interference to suppress our voices and deter us from fighting for those who do not enjoy basic human rights,” said Kwan, who said last May she herself has been a target of affiliates of the People’s Republic of China.

The official petition garnered 5,799 citizen signatures and was largely a reaction to multiple media reports indicating the Chinese government promoted the election of certain politicians. It also follows years of heightened concerns in the Chinese-Canadian community that the PRC government is becoming more involved in civic affairs through the state-operated foreign propaganda network, the United Front Work Department.

Kwan specifically cited human rights and free speech matters the Chinese Communist Party is attempting to suppress in Canada, according to pro-democracy groups that organized the petition.

Are you ready to take action?

Constituent Resources
Mobile Offices
Contact Jenny

Sign up for updates