Posted by admin on May 17th, 2008


Located in Centralcity Shopping Centre (north entrance by SFU Surrey Tower). 1 short block from Surrey Central Skytrain Station!

@ 13450 102nd Avenue Surrey 

Join us in an action to call for the scrapping of Bill C-50! Demand justice and dignity for migrants- No One Is Illegal!

Recently the Conservative government introduced a series of amendments to the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act buried in Bill c-50, the budget bill. This undemocratic move sneaks in critical changes to immigration policy without proposing any of those changes before Parliament.

Under the proposed changes, even if someone meets the necessary- already stringent- criteria for a visa (such as permanent resident, visitor etc), the Minister can reject the application without any Court review. The Minister will also have the power to issue quotas and restrictions on the category (including Family Class and Economic Class immigrants) and country of origin of people. Humanitarian and Compassionate applications no longer have to be examined if the applicant is outside Canada. Finally, the Minister will have the power to decide the order in which applications are processed, regardless of when they are filed.

These sweeping changes will give enormous and arbitrary powers to the Minister around application processing, while perpetuating a racist and anti-poor agenda of setting immigration agendas based on ‘labour market needs’. The government is stating that these measures are a solution to the growing backlog by essentially giving the Minister and her department the power to kick people off the backlog/waiting list.

The major lobby for Bill C50 comes from employer organizations and business lobbies who want immigration policy to meet labour market needs, meaning immigrants are disposable other than their value as cheap labour. These proposed legislative changes come in the context of a global capitalist and nationalist reinforcement of labour flexibility as the guiding principle of immigration policy, where migrants are only as valuable as their labour. In conjunction with the Security and Prosperity Partnership Agreement, it is clear that the priorities will be relatively wealthy people applying under the skilled worker program and investor classes, as well as increasingly vulnerable temporary migrant workers.

The Conservative government says they are “welcoming record numbers of newcomers”, however the reality is that the percentage of permanent residents is decreasing while there is an increase of vulnerable temporary migrant workers without basic rights. Such ‘categories’ of workers will be favoured for “priority processing” at the grave expense of family class, refugees, and other ‘undesirables’. This commodification is taking place in an increasingly racist and hostile climate to immigrants, who are perceived as security threats, backwards, too accommodated etc.

In respose to an overwhelming negative reaction to these amendements, the Immigration Minister has recently been forced to attempt to spin these regressive changes, including launching a intense advertising campaign only in ethnic media to help get the bill through second reading within the next few weeks!

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