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‘We’re in the middle of shifting our system to deal with a lot more irregular migrants,’ says Trudeau

By Peter Mazereeuw      

•This year’s federal budget gave the Immigration and Refugee Board an extra $74-million over the next two years to deal with the demands of the boom in 'irregular migration.' •‘You will be sent home,’ the PM tells economic migrants eyeing asylum claims, but Conservative critic Michelle Rempel says the Liberals are trying to ‘normalize’ illegal border crossings. •The IRB has hired 20 new staff, and plans to hire about 200 more in next few months. The extra funding will allow it to process at least 17,000 more asylum claims and 3,000 appeal cases, but it won’t be enough to allow the IRB to work through the more-than 57,000 cases currently on its plate in the next two years. •The IRB processed 40 per cent more asylum claims last year than it had in 2016.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, pictured leaving the National Press Theatre in Ottawa on June 20, and the Immigration and Refugee Board have tried to adapt Canada's asylum regime to better deal with the influx of thousands of people who have crossed the border in the past year. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Canada is changing its asylum system in response to the thousands of would-be refugees pouring across the Quebec-New York border, says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, while a spokesperson for Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen (York South-Weston, Ont.) says the feds’ efforts to deter economic migrants from using the asylum system are now starting to pay off.

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MPs back more modest option for Parliament visitors’ centre as Centre Block renos roll on

'I appreciate we’re not going for the Cadillac option. …  The larger option was much more expensive,' says NDP House Leader Peter Julian. 'We’re talking about over $110-million in savings.'

Canada ‘ill-prepared’ for potential coronavirus second wave, says Senate committee

News|By Beatrice Paez
The committee noted that the Public Health Agency of Canada has yet to revise or finalize its guidance for long-term care homes in light of concerns about its current relevance.

Cultural assessments needed for sentencing reform, say advocates, amid calls to address high Black incarceration rates

Justice advocates agree with the Black Parliamentary Caucus’ recent call for pre-sentencing reports, similar to the Gladue reports for Indigenous offenders, to be used for racialized Canadians.

Disaggregated data key to ensuring representative workplaces, say experts, as PMO skirts Black staff statistic

The PMO declined to provide a specific breakdown of self-identified Black staffers among cabinet offices when asked, but says it plans to circulate further voluntary surveys to better understand its staff ‘later this sum

Argentina, Chile, DRC, Hungary, and Madagascar say they backed Canada’s UN Security Council bid, but closest allies are silent

News|By Neil Moss
The United States, United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand were among 17 countries that wouldn't comment on whether they backed Canada's recent bid for a Security Council seat.

Feds’ fiscal snapshot puts deficit at more than $340-billion, with promise of an update in fall

News|By Beatrice Paez
Finance Minister Bill Morneau says a decision on whether the government intends to release a full budget in the fall will be dependent on efforts at managing the pandemic and its economic fallout.

Feds should more clearly verify who is allowed to repay student loans at reduced rates, says auditor general

News|By Palak Mangat
According to an auditor general report, ESDC 'did not properly check the accuracy of applications.'

Poor data, deficiencies in case management to blame for slow pace in enforcing deportation orders, says auditor general

News|By Beatrice Paez
According to CBSA, most of the cases in its 'wanted' inventory involve individuals 'considered a low risk to public safety and are not an agency priority.'

Canada needs to protect Arctic sovereignty to confront emboldened Putin, say MP and expert

News|By Neil Moss
Liberal MP John McKay says there will be 'incursions and intrusions and aggressive actions taken increasingly in the Arctic' by Russia.
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