Weir to Goodale: Stand Up to Trump on Border Changes

February 28th, 2017

Regina–Lewvan MP Erin Weir launched a petition today challenging neighbouring MP Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety, to stand up to Donald Trump’s administration on U.S. border pre-clearance changes. 

Under the Liberal government’s proposed Bill C-23, sponsored by Goodale, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents stationed in pre-clearance areas would gain powers to detain Canadians, carry firearms, and perform strip-searches on Canadian soil.

Many Canadians, including Regina residents, are concerned about their privacy rights and the potential for abuses, especially after Donald Trump's recent executive orders that banned travellers from seven majority-Muslim countries and created chaos at airports.

New Democrats are in favour of measures that will facilitate fluid movement at the U.S. border, but not at the expense of human rights, respect for the privacy of Canadians and Canada’s sovereignty.

Canadians are overwhelmingly opposed to Trump’s immigration and border policies. Instead of standing up for concerned Canadians or for Canadian Charter rights, Goodale has been defending U.S. border policy in the House of Commons and in media interviews.

Travellers have already reported incidents of smart phones being searched at the border, of being pressured to reveal their account passwords to U.S. border agents, and of questioning of a purely political or religious nature.

Meanwhile, articles from observers including The Globe and Mail and the Canadian Bar Association are recommending that Canadians take the extreme step of wiping devices clean or leaving them at home before trips to the U.S.

“Instead of raising civil liberties with Trump while in Washington, Goodale is using his personal brand to ask Canadians to trust Donald Trump’s judgement,” noted Weir.

“Canada should not normalize Trump’s extreme policies by incorporating them into domestic legislation. We are asking Goodale to stand up to Trump, and withdraw Bill C-23.”

Sign Weir’s petition at http://www.erinweir.com/c23