Closing Canada’s border to refugee claimants is dangerous and illegal, and must be reversed


Doctors Without Borders Canada/Medecins Sans Frontières (MSF) Canada, and human rights organizations the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network and Amnesty International Canada called on the Canadian government to uphold refugee laws and treaties and to immediately reverse its March 20, 2020 Orders in Council legislation during COVID-19 to shut the Canada-US border to people seeking refugee protection and return them to the US as of March 21, 2020.  

A ban on refugee claimants entering Canada from the US, even implemented temporarily as part of the response to the coronavirus pandemic, risks endangering the lives of people seeking refuge and jeopardizing the public health response to safeguard all.

Today’s statement urges for continuity and continued measures that will protect both public health and the health of all, including those who have been forced to flee their homes, and calls for a reverse to a ban that does nothing but stoke xenophobia and discrimination and is not supported by public health evidence.