Stephen Harper pauses for a moment as he addresses the crowd on election night, Oct. 19, 2015. (Jonathan Hayward/CP)The former Harper government began a legal appeal of that judgment, but lost power in the October election that vaulted Justin Trudeau's Liberals to power.
Criteria Tories were pushingThe Conservatives brought in a list of Designated Countries of Origin to weed out refugee claimants — countries that were deemed to have proper courts, human rights and rule of law and were thus less likely to produce genuine refugees.
Immigration Minister John McCallum. (Photo: Fred Chartrand/CP)"Our government has promised to provide citizens of Designated Countries of Origin a right to appeal refugee decisions," Laursen said Monday in an email. "Withdrawing this (constitutional) appeal is another important step towards fulfilling the government's commitments and reviewing our litigation strategy." The Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers had announced the government's decision to drop the legal case on social media earlier in the day, but did not respond to a request for comment.
Idea of "safe" country discriminatoryFederal Court Justice Keith Boswell ruled last July that the "safe" country policy was discriminatory, because it denied an appeal process to refugee claimants from the designated countries that was available to all other refugee applicants. "It also serves to further marginalize, prejudice and stereotype refugee claimants from DCO countries which are generally considered safe and 'non-refugee producing,'" said the Federal Court judgment. "Moreover, it perpetuates a stereotype that refugee claimants from DCO countries are somehow queue-jumpers or 'bogus' claimants who only come here to take advantage of Canada's refugee system and its generosity."
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