New CCR report shows established refugees now face loss of status in Canada

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Media Release

For immediate release
7 May 2014

New CCR report shows established refugees now face loss of status in Canada

The Canadian Council for Refugees today released its report “Cessation: stripping refugees of their status in Canada”. The report provides case examples and shows that, following recent changes to the law, refugees now live in fear of loss of status and removal from Canada, in a process that is arbitrary, draconian and absurd.

“Unfortunately, our concerns about the change in the law regarding cessation have proven to be well-founded,” said Loly Rico, CCR President. “We are seeing a dramatic increase in cessation applications, including against long-term permanent residents who have done nothing wrong. Canadians will be shocked to learn that our government is spending our tax dollars trying to strip the status of law-abiding refugees, many of whom have Canadian children or spouses.”

Although the possibility of a cessation application is not new, recent changes in Canadian law have made the consequences much more dramatic: refugees who are permanent residents may now lose their permanent resident status and be deported.

At the end of March there were 148 cessation applications pending. The Canada Border Services Agency has set itself an annual target of 875 applications to strip refugees of their status.

Among the law-abiding and contributing members of Canadian society now facing cessation applications are individuals who:

  • have been living in Canada for over a decade
  • have Canadian citizen children
  • have a spouse with permanent status in Canada

The CCR has heard from its members that the new reality of cessation is creating a climate of fear that affects refugees broadly, beyond those directly targeted, leaving refugees with a sense of insecurity, even if they have permanent residence.

The report, Cessation: stripping refugees of their status in Canada, is available at http://ccrweb.ca/en/cessation-report

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Contact:

Colleen French, Communication and Networking Coordinator, Canadian Council for Refugees, 514-277-7223, ext. 1, (514) 602-2098 (cell), cfrench@ccrweb.ca