Sunday, 9 January 2011

Canada toughens gay marriage immigration checks

Canadian maple leafImage via Wikipedia
Source: Toronto Sun

By Tom Godfrey

Update: This story has been corrected by Xtra!

A recent demand for same sex sponsorships to come to Canada has led to tougher checks being conducted at embassies abroad.

Canadian diplomats at visa offices abroad must now make sure same sex marriages conducted at the embassies or consulates of other countries are legal before the partners are considered for landed immigration status in Canada.

Couples in some countries where same sex unions are allowed can get married at diplomatic missions where the marriages are recognized, according to immigration officials.

Once hitched, a Canadian citizen can sponsor his partner or both can apply at a nearby Canadian embassy to come here as immigrants, according to immigration officials.

A demand for same-sex sponsorships in 2010 forced officials in Ottawa to review the same sex policy to plug a possible loophole, documents show.

“Marriages performed in embassies or consulates must meet the requirements of the host country in which the mission is located,” said Remo LiFraine, of Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s International Region. “A marriage performed in an embassy or consulate must be legally recognized by the host state.”

LiFraine said those who get married at an embassy “must satisfy an officer that all of the requirements of the host country with respect to marriage have been met.”

Couples choose to get married at the embassy of a foreign country because they don’t feel safe otherwise, immigration officials said.

Canadian embassy staff must now ask if the host country recognizes marriages performed in diplomatic missions in its jurisdiction, LiFraine said in a May 2010 confidential memo obtained through an Access of Information request by lawyer Richard Kurland.

The review surfaced after Canadian visa officers red-flagged for questioning a Colombian doctor, who was selected to work in Newfoundland but only agreed to move if his same-sex partner came with him, documents show.

The men faced queries from immigration officials over marital paperwork obtained in Colombia.

The marriages are recognized in Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, and a number of U.S. states.

The embassies of some European countries have been performing marriages for many years.
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  1. Immigration on a whole is very beneficial to Canada and its residents. History tells repeatedly that it is human kind that loses its previleges. Immigration is good for Canada and its people in any way you consider but the undeue advantage taken by a few people in the name of refugee act bestowed by Canadian government is being highly misused. We have to wait and see how far Canada can allow people in the name of refugees. Of course, humanitarian concerns are to be given the highest priority for human kind’s development and survival but misuse of a syustm is highly deplorable. Let us all pray that the gates of immigration be not closed for all those good people and eligible aspirants just because of the refugees who infiltrate this country and can be a bigger and unsolvable problem. As of now Canada is large in heart and resources.

  2. It appears that I could not move to canada as a permanent resident, because I am a retiree and they are concerned about medical costs.

    One of my thoughts has been to become a "conjugal lover" of a woman, or even man, to get residency so I could move away from the homophobic hate states of America.

    And I'd have to have the same game played for my wife.

    but as a 71 year old I do not want to spend my last 10 years or so in the HHSA.

    See you in Vancouver on vacation,while I check out that city and the options.

    victoria BC is nice but a little too isolated and we'd face a big bill to spend eg one long weekend a month in
    vancouver or US Washington state.


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