The Government of Canada has been clear: 3-year-old Daksh can never live in Canada with his parents.
We disagree. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child disagrees. Canada's own immigration law disagrees.
We hope you do too.
Over the holiday season, we met with an Ottawa couple who were heartbroken that they could not be with their 3.5-year-old son Daksh. The Canadian government has told his parents, Bhavna and Aman, that Daksh can never come to Canada. He has been separated from them and forced to live in India because of human error and apparently inflexible governmental reading of immigration regulations that could be remedied with the stroke of the Immigration Minister's pen. You may be familiar with the Ottawa Citizen story on the case at http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/ottawa-couple-granted-permanent-residency-in-canada-but-young-son-stuck-in-india
WHAT YOU CAN DO
You can help reunite Daksh with his family be signing this online petition: https://www.change.org/p/citizenship-and-immigration-minister-chris-alexander-allow-3-year-old-daksh-to-live-in-canada-with-his-parents?just_created=true
Chris Alexander, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, declared on February 3, 2014, "Our government understands the importance of spending time with family and loved ones and we committed to improving the immigration system so that families can be reunited more quickly." He reiterated this point on December 19, 2014 by saying "Canada has one of the most generous family reunification programs in the world and we are taking action to reduce backlogs and improve processing times—so that families are reunited with their loved ones more quickly.”
Family reunification is a primary objective of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and a noble goal, but unfortunately, that spirit of generosity has not extended to the hard-working Ottawa couple Bhavna Bajaj and Aman Sood, permanent residents who have been told by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), that they can never bring their 3-1/2-year-old son, Daksh, to Canada to live with them. The reason for this conclusion is simple: having received poor advice from an immigration consultant, they did not fill in the proper paperwork when they originally came to Canada as skilled workers in 2013. It was a simple, honest mistake, for which they have been punished for over two years by not being allowed to raise their baby boy here in Canada.
Human beings make errors, honest mistakes, and people should not be punished for them, especially when no harm was intended or done, and one of the individuals concerned is so young and needs to be with his parents. We know that even Immigration Canada makes mistakes. Indeed, the Toronto Star reported on January 5, 2015 that "CIC employees often fail to use correct form letters or provide accurate timelines," errors which "could not only cost individual applicants a chance to live and work in Canada but affect the efficiency of the system and create unnecessary backlogs."
Bhavna and Aman cry every night for missing their son Daksh during some of his most important formative years. They do not seek to deceive or cheat the immigration system, and it's been very difficult for them to go public about their private lives, but it is something they are willing to do in order to reunite their family and to enjoy the embrace of their little boy in their Ottawa home.
Please sign the petition at https://www.change.org/p/citizenship-and-immigration-minister-chris-alexander-allow-3-year-old-daksh-to-live-in-canada-with-his-parents?just_created=true urging that Chris Alexander exercise his discretionary power under section 25 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act to allow Daksh to be reunited with his parents in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
Please share this appeal widely on email, on facebook and other media platforms you may have access to.
Rural Refugee Rights Network
(613) 267-3998, firstname.lastname@example.org
"The child, for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding." – UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
"Applications by a child or his or her parents to enter or leave a State Party for the purpose of family reunification shall be dealt with by States Parties in a positive, humane and expeditious manner." – UN Convention on the Rights of the Child
"to see that families are reunited in Canada" (3d) Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, Canada, under "Objectives" of the Act
"Childhood is entitled to special care and assistance”, Universal Declaration of Human Rights