Canada needs to get own refugee house in or­der

Kenora Daily Miner and News - - COMMENT -

When it comes to Canada’s bor­der woes, the last thing we need is sign onto a United Na­tions deal that will only fur­ther com­pli­cates our cur­rent mess.

Yet that’s just what Prime Min­is­ter

Justin Trudeau is plan­ning to do later this month in Mo­rocco when he signs on to some­thing called the UN Global Com­pact on Mi­gra­tion.

It’s an in­ter­na­tional agree­ment that will see coun­tries co­op­er­ate to deal with the move­ment of mi­grants around the world.

We are, to put it mildly, skep­ti­cal of deals like this. The UN Hu­man Rights Coun­cil seems to do more to shield hu­man rights abuses than it does solve prob­lems. And all the Paris cli­mate deal has given Canada so far is the un­pop­u­lar car­bon tax.

There are few rea­sons to be­lieve this new deal on mi­gra­tion will make things bet­ter and many rea­sons to be­lieve it will worsen our bor­der woes.

One big worry is that Canada will be pres­sured into ac­cept­ing a vol­ume of refugees or eco­nomic mi­grants that is not based on what’s best for us but based on what the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity de­mands of us, that it will ob­sure the line be­tween im­mi­grants and mi­grants.

Poli­cies that de­liver re­spon­si­ble im­mi­gra­tion and in­te­gra­tion should be de­ter­mined by sov­er­eign states, not by in­ter­na­tional bod­ies.

“Cana­di­ans must be in con­trol of their bor­ders and have full sovereignty over their im­mi­gra­tion sys­tem, and refuse to al­low the gov­ern­ment to con­tinue to cede this con­trol to au­thor­i­ties be­yond our bor­ders,” a Con­ser­va­tive mo­tion call­ing on the gov­ern­ment to re­ject the com­pact reads in part. (It was re­jected by the Lib­er­als Wed­nes­day af­ter­noon.)

It would be great if this com­pact re­sulted in a shar­ing of best prac­tices that strength­ened Canada’s im­mi­gra­tion sys­tem, but cur­rently there is no real plan or fund­ing to care for those who have al­ready crossed our bor­ders.

The United States has a mess on their south­ern bor­der that’s tear­ing at their so­cial fab­ric. Europe has no han­dle on their bor­ders right now.

And while it’s true that Canada has un­til very re­cently had an im­mi­gra­tion sys­tem that’s the envy of the world, we now have lit­tle con­trol over the 20,000 peo­ple a year cross­ing il­le­gally over our bor­der.

Be­fore Canada makes fur­ther com­mitt­ments, we need to fix and fund our refugee sys­tem here.

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