A new Canada immigration bill has been proposed which would allot new powers to Minister of Canadian immigration Jason Kenney, including the ability for Kenney to deny entry into Canada to visitors for public policy reasons. The new bill would make it more accessible for the government to deport refugees, Canada permanent residents and visitors for reasons of serious criminality, crimes punishable by sentences of imprisonment lasting 6 months or more; ‘more accessible’ meaning that the government can automatically deport any non-Canadian citizen who is sentenced to more than 6 months in jail. “If you are a foreign national and you want the privilege of staying in Canada, don’t commit a serious crime. I don’t think that’s too much to ask people” said Kenney in a statement.
There is more to the bill than just that, including a measure that would give Kenney the power to deny someone entry or temporary resident status for up to three years on the basis of public policy considerations. The proposed law would also take away humanitarian and compassionate grounds as factors for appealing a decision of inadmissibility to Canada and would mean the public safety minister would be able to consider only national security and public safety in deciding whether someone can become Canadian, rather than taking into consideration psychological factors as well.
Other proposed changes under the act include: A rule that would deny an appeal to those with foreign convictions for crimes that would carry a maximum sentence of 10 years in Canada, a rule that would deny entry to Canada to those with a family member inadmissible for security and human rights reasons or organized crime connections, even if that family member isn’t travelling with them, a five-year inadmissibility period for lying on immigration applications, in addition to automatic inadmissibility for non-Canadians and permanent residents for acts of espionage or acts against Canada’s interests.
“It often takes years to deport even dangerous foreign criminals from Canada. In some cases, foreign criminals and terrorists here have evaded removal from Canada for over a decade as they exploit endless appeals and loopholes. Canadians expect that foreign criminals will get due process before being removed, but not an endless abuse of our generosity,” immigration Canada said.