Tilson to Attend Emergency Committee Meeting to Tackle Border Crossers
ORANGEVILLE, ON – David Tilson, Member of Parliament for Dufferin-Caledon, will attend an emergency meeting of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration in Ottawa on Monday, July 16, 2018, to discuss the situation with respect to illegal border crossing at Canada’s border with the United States.
“We have a serious issue at our southern border and it is impacting our immigration system at every level,” said Mr. Tilson. “Both provincial and municipal governments are calling for financial assistance from the federal government because a sizable part of the financial and resource burden of illegal border crossers falls on these lower levels of government.”
Since the beginning of 2017 through the end of May, 2018, more than 30,000 individuals have illegally crossed the Canadian border northwards from the US seeking asylum. This is in addition to Canada’s regular, compassionate refugee program. Many of these individuals, by the government’s own admission, will not qualify under the rules for granting asylum but are nonetheless entitled to a refugee determination hearing before the Immigration and Refugee Board.
“While they await a hearing in an ever-increasing backlog, they have access to services that are provided by both provincial and municipal governments,” stated Mr. Tilson. “This is putting a severe strain on services and shelters in Toronto, Montreal and elsewhere. In Toronto, now-occupied college dorms must be clear of refugee claimants by early August to allow for the return of students. The federal government has a clear responsibility to assist these levels of government with the costs of their mismanagement of the border.”
The three Conservative Members of the Committee, along with the Member for the NDP, wrote to the Chair of the Committee on July 11 requesting the meeting. Under House of Commons rules, the meeting must be held – whether the House of Commons is in regular session or not.