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date: 26 February 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the criminalization of asylum seekers arriving irregularly into Canada and the human rights implications of this process, in particular the Designated Foreign National (DFN) policy established in 2012 and the increased role of the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in the refugee system. These changes exemplify the crisis-led management by the previous Conservative government as a reaction to the 2009 and 2010 boat arrivals of nearly 600 Tamil asylum seekers from Sri Lanka. The specific objectives of the policy amendments are scrutinized to determine whether their stated goals are being achieved. The chapter draws on interviews conducted between October 2015 and May 2017 in three major provinces (Quebec, Ontario, and British Columbia) that host the majority of asylum seekers in Canada.

Keywords: securitization, asylum seekers, criminalization, human rights, irregular migrants, Designated Foreign National, CBSA, crisis management

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