USA Today published an interesting piece about the Canadian government's latest public relations campaign to dissuade would-be migrants from transiting the United States to illegally cross the border into Canada.
With the announced termination of a number of protections such as Temporary Protected Status for various nationals who will be obliged to depart the United States, there has been a steady flow of such individuals heading north to seek asylum rather than risk deportation here.
While in U.S. terms the flow is a trickle, in Canadian terms it's a veritable flood — and because these individuals aren't covered by a bilateral agreement that would allow them to be handed back to U.S. authorities, once in Canada, they are a Canadian problem.
The latest effort focused on South Florida, which has a substantial number of affected nationals, such as Haitians who may very well be contemplating the trip. The Canadian official leading it was one "Randy Boissonnault, a liberal member of Parliament and a special advisor to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau", as USA Today tells us.
Boissonnault was hosted and assisted in his efforts by various migrant advocacy groups that are a powerful voice in the Miami-Dade community, and have been for years. Given their mission and focus, these groups, such as Americans for Immigrant Justice, have inevitably had a strained, often hostile, relationship with U.S. immigration authorities operating in South Florida.
Why, you may ask, would migrant advocacy groups provide a platform for a Canadian immigration official whose own aims — preventing and deterring illegal immigration — mirror those of U.S. officials? The only reason I can think of is that if these migrants move northward, the groups lose their constituency, and with it, their power base.
Why, if enough migrants left, those advocacy groups themselves might have to contemplate moving to the frozen north and reestablish themselves, instead of staying in the subtropical climes of South Florida. That's irony.