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Canada Supreme Court upholds Safe Third Country Agreement with US

by Derek Andrews
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Canada’s Supreme Courtroom ruled unanimously Friday that the nation’s Protected Third Nation Settlement (SCTA) with the US is constitutional underneath section 7 of the Canadian Constitution of Rights and Freedoms, rejecting a problem introduced by a bunch of human rights organizations and refugees who had tried to enter Canada from the US. Part 7 of the Constitution ensures “the proper to life, liberty and safety of the individual and the proper to not be disadvantaged thereof besides in accordance with the ideas of elementary justice.”

The courtroom discovered that whereas “the dangers of detention upon return to the USA… fall throughout the scope of liberty and safety of the individual,” there isn’t a proof that US immigration detention and assessment practices are “essentially unfair, and thus the danger of detention that returnees face isn’t overbroad.”

Justice Nicholas Kasirer wrote within the courtroom’s causes that “the appellants didn’t discharge their burden to point out that safeguards are absent within the American asylum system. Whereas the document reveals that returnees face a danger of detention in the USA, it additionally discloses mechanisms that create alternatives for launch and supply for assessment by administrative determination makers and courts.” The courtroom additionally famous that there are provisions inside Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that may stop a refugee from being returned to the US in the event that they confronted the danger of deportation again to the nation the place they suffered persecution.

Whereas the courtroom additionally rejected the group’s declare that the US’s designation as a “protected third nation” was outdoors the federal government’s authority, it despatched the group’s third declare, that the settlement violates Section 15 of the Constitution resulting from gender-based discrimination, again to the decrease courtroom.

The plaintiffs within the case embrace a household from El Salvador, an Ethiopian lady and a household from Syria who left the US amid the Trump administration’s 2017 ban on journey from Syria. Collectively, they argued that the Canadian authorities violated part 7 of the constitution by turning Canada-bound refugees again to the US, the place they’ll topic to deportation, poor detention circumstances and the potential for discrimination. The Ethiopian refugee, Nedira Jemal Mustefa, tried to enter Canada fearing the potential for her asylum declare being denied within the US, however she was turned again on the border and topic to per week in solitary confinement at a US immigration detention facility.

The courtroom’s determination comes after the Federal Courtroom of Enchantment overturned a decrease courtroom ruling which discovered that the STCA violated part 7 of the constitution as a result of the danger of detention for returned refugees within the US was “grossly disproportionate.”

The SCTA has been in power since 2004. It mandates that refugees stay within the first “protected nation” that they arrive in, whether or not Canada or the US, topic to sure exceptions. In March, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and US President Joe Biden agreed to amend the SCTA by closing a loophole that allowed claimants to have their claims heard in Canada in the event that they crossed the US-Canada border at an unauthorized level.

Source / Picture: jurist.org

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