CANADA DEPORTING THOUSANDS AMID THE PANDEMIC
Canada deported thousands of people even as COVID-19 raged last year, data seen by Reuters show, and lawyers say deportations are ramping up, putting people needlessly at risk in the midst of a global health emergency.
Like many other countries, Canada is struggling to stop a second wave from spiraling out of control, and its political leaders are begging residents to stay home to prevent the spread, Anna Mehler Paperny reported for Reuters.
Lawyers and human rights advocates are decrying Canada’s November 2020 decision to resume deportations. Until now, the extent of the country’s pandemic deportations was not known, but recent interviews with immigration lawyers and scrutiny of government numbers has shed light on the situation.
Canada counted 12,122 people as removed in 2020 - 875 more than the previous year and the highest number since at least 2015, according to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) data seen by Reuters.
The government says this was necessary and done safely.
The CBSA says the high number last year is because it includes people who decided to leave on their own, termed “administrative removals.” In 2019 there were 1,657 administrative removals, compared with 8,215 last year.
Even subtracting those numbers, that leaves thousands of people deported as the pandemic raged and governments cautioned against travel of any kind for safety reasons.
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