Motion tabled to make it harder to revoke citizenship

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Senator Elaine McCoy wants to fix the ‘flawed’ law

An independent senator Elaine McCoy representing Alberta is tabling a motion to amend the Bill C-6, the act to amend the Citizenship Act, to ensure a due process is established for those facing citizenship revocations on grounds of fraud and false representation.

Canadian law has allowed citizenship to be revoked on the grounds of fraud and false representation since 1947, but reforms by the former Conservative government in 2015 to transfer the power from the Governor in Council (essentially Governor General acting on the advice of cabinet) to immigration officials resulted in 235 Canadians losing their citizenship. This is in stark contrast to the 167 who lost their citizenship in the period between 1988 until the reforms.

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Bill C-6was introduced by the Liberals to fulfill a campaign promise to repeal what the party said were “unfair elements” of its predecessor’s rules, including allowing citizenship revocation for dual citizens convicted of serious crimes such as terrorism, arguing it created two classes of citizens.

Among other changes, the Liberal bill would remove the requirement that a citizenship applicant “intend” to continue to live in Canada, reduce the residency requirement for citizenship eligibility to three years out of four (versus four out of six) and restrict the citizenship exam and language test to applicants between 18 and 54.

No hearing is required and the proceedings are generally conducted by mail. A citizen can only ask the Federal Court to review the decision after the citizenship has already been revoked. – CINEWS

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