Ottawa, ON – Michelle Rempel, Shadow Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, issued a statement following Citizenship and Immigration Committee:
“Yesterday, Canada’s Conservatives had the opportunity to question the newly appointed Chair of the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB), Mr. Richard Wex. At this Committee meeting we discovered shocking details of just how mismanaged our asylum system has become under Justin Trudeau.
“The new IRB Chair revealed that there are about 65,000 pending claims at the Refugee Protection Division that are backlogging our systems. Even if no new cases are added, it would take over two years to clear these cases alone.
“Justin Trudeau has done very little to clear the backlog of cases at the IRB. As Mr. Wex and other witnesses at Committee noted, this could serve as a pull-factor to those seeking to illegally cross into Canada from safe places like Upstate New York. This is another failure of Justin Trudeau’s government to fix the border crossing crisis and our failing systems.
“Not only did we get a picture of how strained our systems are yesterday, but it was also revealed that the backlog will only continue to grow as the intake of claims exceeds our system’s capacity. This should be alarming to Canadians, as it impedes our ability to help the world’s most vulnerable, and allows for those coming illegally from the United States to wait years for their claims to be processed. This backlog will have significant impacts on our social services programs, which provinces like Ontario have already said are under strain due to Justin Trudeau’s inability to fix this problem.
“Canada’s Conservatives will continue to advocate for an asylum system that is planned, orderly and compassionate. We call upon the government to immediately close the loophole in the Safe Third Country Agreement, regain control of our borders, and prioritize the world’s most vulnerable.”