CBC News:Security certificates constitutional: court

Troublesome news regarding national security certificates from the Federal Court of Appeal. From a sidebar:

Citizenship and Immigration Canada can remove a person considered to be a security threat by issuing a Security Certificate signed by the solicitor general and the minister of citizenship and immigration, and endorsed by a judge of the Federal Court.
When a security certificate is issued:

  • all other immigration proceedings are suspended until the Federal Court makes a final decision about the certificate;
  • foreign nationals who are the subject of a Security Certificate are automatically detained. Permanent residents may be detained on a case-by-case basis.

If the Federal Court decides that the certificate is unreasonable, it is quashed. If the court decides that it is reasonable, the certificate becomes an order for removal of the person. The court’s decision can’t be appealed.

I don’t have a major problem with non-citizens being treated differently than citizens. However, I think there need to be strict limits to the amount of time this detention can go on and this sort of thing should never be possible for a citizen (of any stripe). The National Security should not trump the consitution. Someone deemed a risk before becoming a citizen should be deported as soon as possible, we do not have the arbitrary right to keep people in limbo. There is also the question of not seeing the evidence against them. Tricky that one, since if the evidence is correct they will be expelled and out of our control and can reveal potetntially damaging information.

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