CCR Resolutions Database

Search here for CCR resolutions. You can also consult resolutions by date of adoption.

Res.: 6 , Dec 1999
Whereas:
  1. The CCR supports openness, transparency, democracy and accountability in refugee affairs;
  2. The public process relating to the setting of resettlement levels has virtually disappeared;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR encourage the Minister to undertake a more thorough consultation process in preparation for the refugee resettlement levels for 2001.

 

Res.: 14 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration has proposed in a white paper that the mandate of the Immigration and Refugee Board be expanded to include adjudication on whether persons face risks in returning to their countries of nationality other than those risks covered by the Refugee Convention;
  2. It has been announced that Citizenship and Immigration Canada will soon be drafting legislation to embody the above mentioned proposal;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Support the expansion of the mandate of the IRB as proposed by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, provided that the legislation and regulations enabling this proposal contain the following provisions:

    (a) that the IRB shall, when dealing with a person's claim, first determine if the person is a Convention Refugee before going on to decide whether that person faces other risks in returning to her/his country of nationality;

    (b) that the risks which the IRB may determine are grounds for not returning a person to his/her country of nationality shall include but not be limited to:

    (i) risks identified in international instruments to which Canada is party, such as the Convention Against Torture, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness;

    (ii) Generalized and personal risks resulting from country conditions, such as a state of war, generalized violence, widespread abuse of human rights, unchecked criminal activity, state-sanctioned torture or persecution against women;

    (iii) risks to family life and unity.

    (c) that the IRB be designated a "court of first instance" to determine whether a person's rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms would be violated should he/she be required to leave Canada and return to her/his country of nationality;

    (d) that the selection and training of members of the IRB be done in a fair, unbiased, and open manner, as more specifically stated in previous CCR resolutions;

    (e) that a person have the right to an appeal on the merits from the decision of the IRB in accord with CCR Resolution 24, May 92;

    (f) that there be a pre-removal review conducted by the IRB to determine if there has been any change in circumstances which would alter the IRB's initial decision on the person's claim for Convention Refugee status and on whether that person would face other risks;

    (g) that a person has the right to paid counsel at the initial hearing before the IRB, at the appeal on the merits, and at the pre-removal review.

  2. Request meaningful consultation on the issues addressed prior to the drafting of legislation on these matters.
Res.: 12 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The UNHCR has a program providing firewood to refugees in Dadaab camp;
  2. This program has been instrumental in reducing the incidences of rape of refugee women when they go out to collect firewood;
  3. Funding for this program ends in June 1999;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR urge Canada to provide funding for the continuation of the firewood program for Dadaab, Kenya.

 

Res.: 5 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The fundamental value of the Metropolis project is to provide research results, which are rooted in reality, to assist governments in making policies;
  2. Community organizations serving immigrants and refugees have a role as legitimate and necessary partners along with academic researchers and government policy-makers;
  3. Community organizations serving immigrants and refugees can play an important role in connecting with immigrants and refugees, in identifying policy relevance and in articulating the concrete relevance of research to current and potential funders;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR write to the Metropolis Secretariat and all Canadian national Metropolis centres urging Metropolis to:

  1. Partner with the settlement sector in organizing a seminar highlighting research done by NGOs;
  2. Provide mechanisms to facilitate the development of a network of NGOs, including community organizations serving immigrants and refugees, from the participating Metropolis countries;
  3. Commit to helping community organizations serving immigrants and refugees participate by encouraging government and universities to provide funding for their meaningful participation, including national and international conferences;
  4. Develop an effective process for the three partners, that is, government, academics and community organizations serving immigrants and refugees, to translate research results to policy change, and from policy change to policy implementation;
  5. Enable newcomers themselves to be meaningful partners with government, academics and community organizations serving immigrants and refugees, and not just research subjects.
Res.: 10 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The war in Sierra Leone has been going on for the past nine years, creating a massive humanitarian crisis and massive outflow of refugees;
  2. There is no durable solution in the immediate and medium terms;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR urge:

  1. The government of Canada to recognize the urgent resettlement need of refugees from Sierra Leone including torture victims, women and children at risk, and refugees with family links in Canada;
  2. The UNHCR to provide immediate protection for refugees from Sierra Leone as per its operational mandate, which includes:

    (a) Protection from physical harm,

    (b) Working with appropriate organizations to meet the total needs of the refugees;

    (c) Ensuring that the basic human rights of the refugees are upheld.

  3. The government of Canada to donate generously to the relief operations for refugees from Sierra Leone.
Res.: 15 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. Various panels of the Refugee Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board have produced personal information forms and filed them in evidence in the hearings of other claims;
  2. The new personal information form asks claimants to provide reasons why their claims should not be disclosed in the hearings of other claims;
  3. The Refugee Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board has proposed new rules for the Division which would allow disclosure of personal information forms in the hearings of other claims;
  4. Disclosure of personal information forms in the hearings of other claims turns the forms from confidential documents to public documents;
  5. Requiring refugee claims to be made in public is antithetical to refugee protection;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR call on the Refugee Division of the Immigration and Refugee Board not to disclose any personal information form in the hearing of another claim unless:

  1. The information in the personal information form is sanitized so that neither the claimant nor any other person the claimant names in the form can be identified;
  2. The claimant expressly consents to the disclosure of the form for the purpose of the hearing of that claim; or
  3. The Refugee Division is satisfied, at a hearing where the claimant whose personal information form is to be disclosed is notified and given an opportunity to be present and make representations, that there is no serious possibility that the life, liberty or security of any person would be endangered by reason of the filing of the personal information form in the hearing of the other claim.
Res.: 3 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The CCR notes with concern the deteriorating relationship between settlement agencies and CIC in some regions, brought about by micro-management;
  2. Settlement agencies are professional social services agencies dedicated to helping clients settle in Canada;
  3. Settlement agencies are committed to being accountable for funds;
Therefore be it resolved:

That:

  1. The CCR urge CIC to review, in consultation with settlement agencies, the manner in which CIC contracts with agencies. The objective of this review is to establish accountability measures which promote the best possible services for clients and efficient, effective agency management;
  2. The review address, inter alia, the following specific issues occurring in some regions:

    (a) the independence of agencies and the fact that they are already subject to annual external audits;

    (b) the importance of client confidentiality;

    (c) the fact that rigid enforcement of ISAP eligibility rules undermines the ability of agencies to offer services in a welcoming and client centered manner (noting that CCR has resolved in November 1995 that services should be available on the basis of need);

    (d) the necessity of agencies to respect employment standards and human rights legislation as employers (particularly with regards to cuts which lead to layoffs and the practice of forcing agencies to lay off, on the basis of national origin, settlement workers, many of whom serve diverse clienteles);

    (e) the provision of reasonable and consistent administrative and overhead costs and the practice of insisting that agencies subsidize ISAP services through private fund-raising and funds from other institutional funders (an unrealistic maximum of 15% administrative costs is set in some regions);

    (f) the need for a reasonable balance between CIC's obligation to monitor funds, the administrative burden of reporting and the usefulness of information to be collected;

    (g) the use of three month contracts with long established partners, making it impossible to plan services, rent facilities and manage staff and causing agencies to devote a disproportionate amount of time to contract negotiation.

Res.: 8 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees has introduced an Emergency Evacuation Program for refugees from Kosovo which aims to ensure the borders of Kosovo remain open for further refugees;
  2. This evacuation program has been identified outside of global resettlement needs;
  3. The Government of Sweden which is evacuating Kosovars is reducing its resettlement program in response to this evacuation program;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Write to UNHCR to welcome the protection initiative of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and to encourage UNHCR to apply a similar program in comparable situations in other world regions;
  2. Write to CIC to:

    a) Welcome the Canadian response to this program for refugees from war and urge Canada to respond in a comparable way to future similar appeals from UNHCR;

    b) Express our appreciation of the possibility of permanent residence in the Canadian program and caution that the wishes of the refugee must be paramount;

    c) Urge Canada to bring other refugees nominated by UNHCR as in urgent need of protection in an equally swift manner;

    d) Urge Canada to extend to other refugees in Canada equally fast family reunification and the extended Interim Federal Health Program.

    e) Ask Canada to urge other countries, including Sweden, not to use the Kosovo appeal as a rationale for reducing existing resettlement programs.

Res.: 13 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. Stateless people have been and are currently detained and/or deported by Canada to go into orbit, or detention or limbo elsewhere;
  2. There is a 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons to protect such persons, which the UN High Commission for Refugees is promoting but which Canada has not ratified;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR urge the government of Canada to:

  1. Develop an internal mechanism to protect stateless persons;
  2. In the meantime, release stateless persons from detention and process them through humanitarian and compassionate review;
  3. Ratify the 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons;
  4. Promote the ratification of the Convention by other states.
Res.: 1 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The CCR has supported, in principle, the development of national settlement service standards as stated in the National Principles for settlement services (see Res. 2, Nov. 95, Res. 4, Jun. 96, and Res. 4, Nov. 96);
  2. The creation of a national settlement service standards steering committee during the November 1998 CCR conference has provided a mechanism to develop these standards and a draft framework and development strategy were presented during the May 1999 CCR conference;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR support the draft national settlement service standards framework and adopt the proposed development strategy.

 

Res.: 6 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The implementation of the Women at Risk urgent protection pilot project has been repeatedly delayed;
  2. Women and children who are in immediate danger of persecution or physical violence can be identified;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR demand that implementation of the Urgent Protection Pilot Project proceed without further delay.

 

Res.: 11 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. Canada has recognized the situation which prevails in DRC and has put DRC on the list of source countries;
  2. The situation of persecution and the need for protection of the Tutsis in DRC are known;
  3. A number of Tutsis (men, women and children) have been in detention or in hiding since October 1998 as a result of ethnic persecution;
  4. Many of them have family in Canada;
  5. A number of sponsorship groups confronted with this issue are ready to cooperate to find a solution to this
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR ask the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration to commit the resources and methods necessary to select and interview and immediately process for resettlement the persons concerned who are in very urgent need of protection.

Res.: 4 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. CIC hired a consulting firm to hold a small consultation on outcome measures for the LINC program and to produce a summary report;
  2. The consultation appears to have focused on managers and not included teachers and students;
  3. Outcome measures will likely have a significant effect on LINC contracts in the future;
Therefore be it resolved:

That CCR urge CIC to:

  1. Distribute the report to all LINC providers to encourage wider input;
  2. Allow for consultation on recommended outcome measures before finalizing the measures;
  3. Be cognizant of the cost implications of outcome measurements for service providers;
  4. Commit themselves to a wide consultation on outcome measures for the ISAP and HOST programs.
Res.: 9 , May 1999
Whereas:

The CCR has been traditionally been concerned with the root causes of mass exoduses;

Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR call on:

  1. The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia to investigate, and, where justified, prosecute any and all substantial allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity in the former Yugoslavia, whether the allegations are made against the Yugoslav government forces or paramilitary groups, the Kosovo Liberation Army or the NATO forces and whether the allegations are made against the leadership of those forces or the rank and file;
  2. The Government of Canada: a) to withdraw from and cease its participation in the NATO military action against Yugoslavia;b) to seek a peaceful negotiated solution to the crisis in Yugoslavia through the United Nations;
  3. The Government of Yugoslavia: a) to stop any repressive action against the civilian population of Kosovo; b) to stop attacks by its security forces on the civilian population; c) to withdraw all security units used for civilian repression; d) to cooperate fully with international efforts to improve the humanitarian situation in Kosovo; e) to allow all refugees and displaced persons to return to their homes in safety; f) to cooperate fully with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
Res.: 2 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. Manitoba and British Columbia have recognized refugee claimants as legitimate recipients of settlement services;
  2. The CCR believes it is necessary to provide services to all newcomers to Canada, including refugee claimants;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR urge that:

  1. Refugee claimants be included in any and all funding formulas as legitimate recipients of settlement services throughout Canada;
  2. Additional funds be made available for settlement agencies to provide appropriate levels of services to this client group;
  3. The provinces that receive fewer numbers of refugee claimants not be financially penalized by this reality.
Res.: 7 , May 1999
Whereas:
  1. The CCR has developed a position paper entitled Settlement in Canada of Refugees from Kosovo;
  2. The CCR is convinced of the need for communication, partnership, consultation, and co-ordinated response among all levels of government, sponsoring organizations and service providing organizations in a spirit of goodwill and common objectives;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR adopt the above-mentioned position paper and communicate it to Citizenship & Immigration Canada with the request that it be considered and its implications discussed with members of the CCR.

Canadian Council for Refugees POSITION PAPER

Subject: Settlement in Canada of Refugees from Kosovo

Goal: To resettle in destinations across Canada those refugees from Kosovo now located in government "sustainment sites".

Principles: For refugees from Kosovo, as for all refugees needing resettlement in Canada, the CCR believes in a focus upon what is best for each, including:

  1. Appropriate destining
  2. Orientation to Canada
  3. Orientation to community
  4. Opportunities for refugees to make choices
  5. Application of best settlement practices
  6. Varied and creative approaches to successful settlement
  7. Equity of services
  8. Interdependence of the service-providing infrastructure

    While recognizing that the following principles can have general application to the resettlement of all refugees, with particular relevance to the refugees from Kosovo now arriving under "Operation Parasol", the CCR believes in:

  9. The benefit of community involvement, and the opportunity to engender goodwill for these and other refugees
  10. The need for appropriate training and support of volunteers
  11. Access to the service-providing community's long experience
  12. The mutually supportive roles of Sponsorship Agreement Holders and Service Providing Organizations
  13. The commitment of both sponsoring and service providing organizations to "welcome the stranger", transcending and extending any contractual arrangements with government to provide sponsorship or services
  14. The responsibility of the Federal government to provide adequate resources so that the commitment and obligation of the responding community can be fulfilled to the best standards developed over the past twenty years
  15. The need for communication, partnership, consultation, and co-ordinated response among all levels of government, sponsoring organizations and service providing organizations in a spirit of goodwill and common objectives;
Res.: 12 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. Some countries interpret the Refugee Convention in a narrow and technical manner denying effective protection to refugees;
  2. Canadian visa officers sometimes show too much deference to the decisions of tribunals of other countries which have refused refugee claims which under the Canadian interpretation of the Convention would be accepted;
  3. Canada's visa offices are inconsistent in their efforts to establish meaningful channels of communication with local and Canadian NGOs involved in resettlement;
  4. Canada has failed to put in place meaningful review of negative decisions despite a refusal rate significantly higher than other resettlement countries;
  5. Applicants for resettlement from some countries are deported from those countries despite having applications for resettlement to Canada pending, particularly in light of the frequent long processing times for such applications;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Call on the appropriate departments of the Government of Canada to:

     

    a)remind visa offices of the often broader interpretation of the Refugee Convention in Canadian law than that demonstrated by some other countries, particularly with respect to the absence of a requirement for persecution to be at the hands of the state;

    b)ensure that in cases where the applicant does not meet the Convention definition but has a private sponsorship that the relatively broader provisions of the Asylum Class are thoroughly considered;

    c)strengthen and regularize consultation between visa offices and local and Canadian NGOs involved in resettlement;

    d)establish and implement a meaningful review of negative decisions on resettlement cases similar to that recently adopted by US INS;

  2. Call on the Government of Canada to play a prominent role in convincing other governments to interpret the Convention in a broad manner;
  3. Ask the Government of Canada to urge other governments to allow applicants for resettlement in Canada to remain in their countries of asylum pending determination of their applications by Canada.
Res.: 10 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. The Canadian Council for Refugees has promoted the involvement of NGOs in the identification of refugees overseas;
  2. Citizenship and Immigration Canada`s refugee resettlement model proposes the involvement of NGOs as overseas service partners;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR adopt as its position its paper Conditions for the Involvement of NGOs as Overseas Service Partners.

Res.: 20 , Nov 1998
Whereas:

There have been numerous formal and informal complaints about the IRB procedures and members have not been treated seriously;

Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR ask that the mandate of Mr Ratushny be expanded to include the complaints process and violations of fundamental rights in all of the CRDD's regions, the details of which are to be provided by the Working Group on Refugee Protection.

Res.: 1 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. Civic participation, including taking out citizenship, being aware of political issues and voting, is key to full participation in Canadian society;
  2. Political representation seems to be lagging behind demographic change;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR urge its members to:

  1. Actively encourage more civic participation by immigrants and refugees;
  2. Explore the development of programming to facilitate this goal.
Res.: 11 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. The CCR has passed an earlier resolution that the Right of Landing Fee is discriminatory, exclusionary and racist because of the vast variance in country and individual income around the world, and is particularly burdensome for refugees;
  2. Previous to 1995 refugees were not charged interest on transportation loans, admissibility loans and assistance loans;
  3. The interest rate charged is above prime rate;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Continue to call for a repeal of the Right of Landing Fee for all newcomers accepted for landing in Canada;
  2. Insist that no interest be charged on any immigration loans;
  3. Urge the government, pending legislation to repeal interest charges, to charge no more than the prime rate.
Res.: 2 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. The settlement agencies of Ontario have been living with uncertainty since the introduction of "Settlement Renewal" three years ago;
  2. The Ontario Government does not appear to want the responsibility of settlement;
  3. Clients' needs are best served by stable agencies which are focused on client service;
  4. Many of the practices of Ontario Region are inconsistent with the practices of other CIC regions;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Write to CIC National Headquarters asking that:

    a)The Federal Government cease active pursuit of negotiations on settlement renewal with the government of Ontario;

    b)CIC Ontario Region proceed as if settlement renewal will not go forward.

  2. Suggest that CIC improve their management of ISAP, Host and LINC contracts by:
    • Reducing the micro management of contracts, by, among other things, moving from monthly to quarterly reporting and by being more flexible and, at a minimum, implementing the ISAP Handbook which states that "you may shift funds from one cost category to another without prior approval";
    • Respecting agencies' difficulties with cashflow and interest charges by systematically making reasonable advances of funds;
    • Paying salary and administrative costs, including benefits, at a just level of remuneration across the country;
    • Seeking substantive agency input into all of the above.
Res.: 7 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. All Canadian passport holders are equal regardless of country of origin;
  2. Canadian passport and travel document holders have suffered violations of their human rights by foreign governments at foreign ports of entry on the basis of their country of origin;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR call upon the Canadian government to ensure that foreign governments treat all Canadian citizens equally.

Res.: 17 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. Canada has suspended deportations to Algeria, Democratic Republic of Congo (ex-Zaire), Afghanistan, Rwanda, & Burundi;
  2. CIC does not consider this policy to cover removals to third countries, principally the United States;
  3. A significant numbers of claimants arrive at Canadian border points via the United States, often as a result of Canadian interdiction practices;
  4. A growing number of refused refugee claimants face an imminent danger of being removed to the United States, a country which at present has no suspension of deportations to the above-named countries;
  5. The CCR has written several times to the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, in the spring and summer of 1998, asking her to suspend removals of these individuals to the United States;
  6. CIC has to date maintained its policy;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR:

  1. Continue to energetically oppose, by all means possible, the implementation of this policy;
  2. Prepare a letter and information kit which CCR members can use to lobby their M.P.s, and to mobilize support from other organizations involved in human rights work.
Res.: 5 , Nov 1998
Whereas:
  1. Acquisition of language is key to the educational process;
  2. Adequate language funding in the school system is important to the future success of immigrant and refugee children;
  3. Current Ontario government policy only allow for three years of language support from the time of arrival in Canada;
Therefore be it resolved:

That the CCR write to the Ontario Ministry of Education urging that eligibility for funding for language support:

  1. be extended to at least five years;
  2. be measured relative to the students' arrival in the Ontario school system to allow for adequate support for Canadian born children who start school without English skills and to allow for secondary migration from Quebec.

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