Legislative Review, New Directions and Refugee Resettlement

Michael Casasola


On the surface the proposals surrounding
refugee resettlement in the 1999
"white paper" Building on a Strong
Foundation for the 21st Century:
New Directions for Immigration and
Refugee Policy and Legislation appear
to be watered down versions of Legislative Review Advisory Group (LRAG)
1998 report Not Just Numbers: ACanadian Framework for
Future Immigration proposals.
However, the "white
paper" proposals are the "tip of the iceberg"
of a series of recommendations
Citizenship and Immigratiotn Canada
(CIC) has developed on how Canada
should resettle refugees in the future.
This paper outlines and compares the
LRAG report, the "white paper" and
CIC's model for future resetlement. It
argues that the proposals offer an opportunity
to diminish long-standing barriers
to the Canadian resettlement
program, though the motivation for these .
changes may be partially based on very
practical operational needs. Yet in order
to ensure such change takes place, NGOs
will have to continue to pressure CIC and
the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration
that Canada's resettlement program
be truly humanitarian and that the
number of refugees resettled eaçh year not
be reduced.

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