TORONTO: With Chris Alexander replacing Jason Kenney as the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration in Monday’s Cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the opposition New Democratic Party (NDP) has called upon the new minister to “put an end to Conservative mismanagement and prioritize family reunification.”
New Democrats hope that the shuffle under the immigration portfolio will signal an end to failed and regressive immigration policies by the Conservatives, the party said in a statement in Ottawa.
In the statement, NDP Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism critic Jinny Sims, said, “This Conservative government is tired and they’re making desperate attempts to look fresh and sweep years of mismanagement under the rug. A new face in the immigration portfolio won’t change the fact that families are still waiting up to nine years to be reunited with their loved ones.”
Under Minister Kenney, the Conservatives placed a two year moratorium on the Parent and Grandparent Program, introduced stricter rules to family reunification which will double the sponsorship period and implemented an arbitrary 30% increase in the minimum necessary income of the sponsor, said Sims.
Under a failed Conservative system, the current wait time for Parent and Grandparent Program in India has ballooned to approximately 8.5 years, according to her.
“The Conservatives have grossly mismanaged the immigration portfolio at the expense of Canadians waiting to be reunited with their loved ones. That’s why New Democrats are proud to say that we’ve fought to reunite families – under Tom Mulcair’s leadership we’ve pushed for the Conservatives to be held accountable for their many failings.”