September 18, 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ottawa, ON – Shannon Stubbs, Shadow Minster for Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, and Raquel Dancho, Shadow Minister for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, issued the following statement calling on the Trudeau government to take a compassionate approach to resolve situations where families remain separated during the pandemic:
“Our thoughts are with all families and committed couples that have been separated during this pandemic. Since early June, Conservative Members of Parliament have been highlighting cases of Canadians who were unfairly excluded from the Liberals’ immediate family criteria to reunite in Canada.
“We are calling on the Trudeau government to take a compassionate approach to resolve situations where families remain separated, while ensuring the health and safety of Canadians. No one should have to guess whether they will be allowed across the border to be with family. The government must be clear about who can travel across the border, and in what circumstances.
“Conservatives continue to support limiting travel between Canada and the US until the COVID-19 outbreak is under control in both countries. But there is a basic issue of fairness, where Liberal Ministers give themselves the power to provide compassionate exemptions for individuals entering from countries other than the United States, or well connected, elite billionaires can secure exemptions to visit Canada, but Canadians separated from family and partners in the US, do not have the same access. That’s just wrong. The Trudeau government must put forward a responsible plan that clarifies the criteria, fixes this inconsistency, and protects all Canadians.
“Our colleague John Nater, MP for Perth Wellington, championed the case of his constituent Sarah Campbell whose wedding was cancelled because her fiancé was working in the United Kingdom. Recently diagnosed with thyroid cancer, Sarah is still unable to be reunited with her fiancé.
“Marilyn Gladu, MP for Sarnia-Lambton, sponsored e-petition 2657 that called for committed, non-married partners (such as fiancés and long-term relationships) who are not captured in any definition of immediate family to be allowed to use the same immediate family exemptions as other Canadians.
“Dane Lloyd, MP for Sturgeon River Parkland, brought forward the case of Sarah Wallace, who is stuck in Haiti, waiting to finalize her children’s adoption papers, while racing the clock to return to Canada because she’s pregnant and won’t be able to fly after September.
“Matt Jeneroux, MP for Edmonton Riverbend, Hon. Michelle Rempel, MP for Calgary Nose Hill, and others, have collaborated with Dr. David Edward-Ooi Poon of Faces of Advocacy to bring cross-party attention to Canadian families that have been negatively impacted by the specific wording of Liberal border exemptions. These are just a few examples of Canadians who are being let down by the Trudeau government.
“Conservatives call on the Trudeau government to bring forward a clear, fair and compassionate plan that allows Canadians to be reunited with their loved ones.”