BCOHRC was invited to make a submission on the human rights implications of the agreement between BC Corrections and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to use provincial prisons to detain asylum-seekers under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) as the provincial government reviews the agreement. The Office made its submission on Mar. 25, 2022, and it is now available for download.
According to CBSA data, approximately 94 per cent of immigration detainees are held for administrative reasons and pose no risk to public safety.
While the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced the number of immigration detainees in B.C. correctional centres, the number may return to pre-pandemic levels unless immediate action is taken.
BCOHRC is therefore calling for the Province to terminate its agreement with CBSA, to respect its statutory and international human rights obligations and affirm the dignity and rights of migrants.
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If the above version is not accessible for you, please feel welcome to contact our Office to request a printed copy or another format that meets your needs.
On July 21, 2022, the provincial government announced it will terminate its agreement with Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) next year, and end the detention of migrants in provincial jails. BCOHRC commends the Province for this first significant step towards ending the unjust treatment of innocent migrants.
- BCOHRC press release: Commissioner calls on Province to end ‘cruel and unjust’ incarceration of migrants
- Announcement by the provincial government: Minister Farnworth’s statement on ending immigration detention arrangement with CBSA
- BCOHRC press release: Commissioner commends B.C. government for ending unjust treatment of innocent migrants