Author Topic: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg  (Read 1114 times)

scottish

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Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« on: July 16, 2017, 08:08:05 PM »
This article:   https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/16/world/canada/refugees-in-canada.html

Apparently these two guys were in the US from Ghana trying to get refugee status.   One was gay and would be persecuted if sent back.   The other one seems to have pissed off the wrong people.

Anyway, they decided to flee the US by walking across the Canadian border, in the prairies, in the middle of winter.   Sounds like it was near the border town of Emerson on the Minnesota/Manitoba border.   They were found by a trucker, near hypothermic, with severe frostbite.   The frostbite was bad enough that one of them lost *all* his fingers, and the other was able to keep only a thumb. 

Canada granted them legal aid and they were accepted as refugees and allowed to stay in Canada.    Since we have public health care, we are providing support with occupational therapy, surgery and general medical care.   A plastic surgeon even offered to transplant some toes onto their hands to act as fingers.

This story has a lot of nuance to it.

Winnipeg has a Ghanian community which has welcomed them.   However, we have no idea how well they'll integrate into society.     They could be running from many possible problems in Ghana.   They could have no usable skills, or they could become thriving small business owners.

They probably received better health care in Canada than many Americans could get in the US.

For some reason, they didn't wear winter clothing for the crossing.   Maybe they were on the run & couldn't get any, I don't know.   Maybe they didn't know how cold it gets in the prairies in the winter.

We've had about 1100 other people make the same crossing in Q1.   News media has been oddly silent on this topic since the winter.   How many refugees are crossing now?
   




bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2017, 09:16:18 PM »

Quote
But to date, Mr. Mohammed has adamantly refused. He quit school at age 11 to train full time as a soccer player, and he dreams of playing professionally again. For that, he thinks he needs his toes.

Here's why they didn't wear winter clothes - they are dumb as rocks.  Yikes - let's hope this one doesn't decide to have several children with the same mindset.

Very generous of the Canadian people welcoming these refugees.  US/Canada should make it easier by allowing them to go to the boarder crossing to request asylum.  Our social programs in the US are not nearly as generous.  I wonder how Canada can afford it though? 

Letj

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2017, 09:38:00 PM »
I disagree that they are dumb. They are from Ghana and if you have never been to a cold country you don't really understand how cold it can get and how dangerous that can be especially if no one warned them about that.  I knew an immigrant who almost lost their toes the first winter they spent in America because although they wore boots, they didn't realize that it needed a lot of padding to keep their feet warm when walking for a long time in the snow.

bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2017, 09:51:26 PM »
Good point, I was too harsh in judgement there.  I agree it is possible someone from a warm climate may not know how to prepare for cold weather.  This guy is dumb for other reasons though.

Quitting school at age 11 with hopes of a career in professional sports is pretty dumb.  It's probably more common in 3rd world countries where the schools are poor to begin with.  The decision to decline transplant to keep that foolish dream alive at the expense of not being able to do even the most basic tasks is exceedingly dumb.

lostamonkey

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2017, 11:14:00 PM »
Couple comments:
-It is very unfair that these refugees were able to enter Canada before all the legal immigrants and refugees that have been waiting a long time and jumping through all sorts of hoops to get into the country
-There is an obvious loophole in refugee law that needs to be closed. These people entered Canada illegally from a safe country the USA to claim refugee status here. If they had claimed refugee status at the Canada-US legal border crossing, they would have been denied entry because of the safe third country rule. The government should change the laws to deny all US resident refugees from unsafe countries from being able to claim refugee status in Canada.

okits

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2017, 01:57:41 AM »

Quote
But to date, Mr. Mohammed has adamantly refused. He quit school at age 11 to train full time as a soccer player, and he dreams of playing professionally again. For that, he thinks he needs his toes.

Here's why they didn't wear winter clothes - they are dumb as rocks.  Yikes - let's hope this one doesn't decide to have several children with the same mindset.

Very generous of the Canadian people welcoming these refugees.  US/Canada should make it easier by allowing them to go to the boarder crossing to request asylum.  Our social programs in the US are not nearly as generous.  I wonder how Canada can afford it though?

We can't.  Officially, we won't accept anyone with pre-existing medical issues that would be a drain on the healthcare system.  I think these two men received an exemption due to how widely reported their story was and the ensuing public sympathy.  I feel bad for what they fled and their injuries, and that they perceived (accurately or not) that they wouldn't get a fair shake in the U.S.  I'm ambivalent on whether granting resident status on compassionate grounds was the right thing to do.  But I agree with lostamonkey that this queue jumping wasn't fair to those following the legal immigration process.
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sequoia

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2017, 12:42:53 PM »
Good point, I was too harsh in judgement there.  I agree it is possible someone from a warm climate may not know how to prepare for cold weather.  This guy is dumb for other reasons though.

Quitting school at age 11 with hopes of a career in professional sports is pretty dumb.  It's probably more common in 3rd world countries where the schools are poor to begin with.  The decision to decline transplant to keep that foolish dream alive at the expense of not being able to do even the most basic tasks is exceedingly dumb.


Can I be the devil's advocate here? He might be very smart. He probably knows he is screwed (apology for the lack of better words here). By declining transplant, he can say that he is keeping that (foolish) dream alive, and since he can not do most basic tasks, he will require support (and most likely the rest of his life).

bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2017, 12:59:58 PM »
Yes, the thought crossed my mind - he may be a genius. 

scottish

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2017, 03:58:01 PM »
I don't think so.   What genius would give up his fingers so that a foreign government would support him?

I have mixed feelings about this case.    I think it's wonderful that we're helping people.    But we have our own problems looming on the horizon (retiring baby boomers, over dependence on resources, faltering high tech sector and so on).   

I hadn't considered queue jumping.   This needs to be stopped.

sequoia

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2017, 06:24:31 PM »
I don't think so.   What genius would give up his fingers so that a foreign government would support him?

I have mixed feelings about this case.    I think it's wonderful that we're helping people.    But we have our own problems looming on the horizon (retiring baby boomers, over dependence on resources, faltering high tech sector and so on).   

I hadn't considered queue jumping.   This needs to be stopped.

Two things:
1. What I was replying to was "The decision to decline transplant to keep that foolish dream alive at the expense of not being able to do even the most basic tasks is exceedingly dumb." That genius was not planning to lose his fingers, but now that it is a done deal, why not take advantage? I am saying why would he want a transplant now if the Canadian government is going to take care of him for the rest of his life?
2. "What genius would give up his fingers so that a foreign government would support him?" Actually, a lot of people, especially in piss poor third world country would sacrifice not just fingers, but an arm for the exchange of moving to Canada or US in search of better life. From history, we know plenty of people had died trying to reach Canada or US (or Europe) in search of better life.

bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2017, 08:10:29 PM »
The unfairness of the queue jumping is a huge problem for me as well.  In the US we have a large number of people with advanced degrees AND JOBS in the US.  Some of these people lose their visas each year because there is a max limit to how long they can stay without being lucky enough to win a path to permanent residence visa in the annual lottery.

It seems crazy that we must send these very smart productive people home.  At the same time there are people who support amnesty and paths to citizenship for unskilled, unemployed people who sneak in from other countries.

LonerMatt

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2017, 10:51:13 PM »
Que jumping is a myth.

That's just not how immigration works - there is no line that people are orderly waiting in, there's no 'take a ticket and wait to be called, 1 will be first 100 will be later'.

In practice there are dozens of lines for different visas, people cross between these regularly (and policy changes about this too!) and, like medicine, emergencies go through faster no matter how long someone else has been waiting. Sometimes an application can take days, other times years. I guess it's more like calling an internet company for help: depending on your company, your problem, it's level of customer service and who you get directed to you could find yourself being 1st in line, or at the bottom, but even then people could hang up and suddenly you're flying up that 'que'.

It's a flimsy metaphor, and I don't think it's fair to say these two took the place of two others, that assumes that 'places' are fixed (not the case, even though governments say 'we'll accept x number of refugees the real number is always different, and doesn't take into account all the visa classes).
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alsoknownasDean

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2017, 04:35:49 AM »
I wish them the best in their new life in Canada. It's nice to see that the Canadian people are helping those who are less fortunate.

However, these men landed in Brazil, and passed through many countries on their way to Canada. Surely one of the countries they passed through on the way through South and Central America would also have been safe, or at least safer than their respective situations in Ghana.

human

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2017, 04:53:06 AM »
There is no loop hole. It's called an in country asylum claim. You just aren't used to it because there are no massive wars going on justboutside our borders. If you are all so concerned why not do some research on the international refugee system before spouting off some ignorant nonsense?

The IRCC webiste has a lot of data and figures and probably an explanation about the convention. Their budget is about 1.4 billion a year. We spend a lot more on other useless stuff in this country.

bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2017, 05:15:41 AM »
There is no loop hole. It's called an in country asylum claim. You just aren't used to it because there are no massive wars going on justboutside our borders. If you are all so concerned why not do some research on the international refugee system before spouting off some ignorant nonsense?

The IRCC webiste has a lot of data and figures and probably an explanation about the convention. Their budget is about 1.4 billion a year. We spend a lot more on other useless stuff in this country.

What did this post add besides an insult?  I see 'go do some research', 'lots of data and figures and probably an explanation'.  I think this post is 'ignorant nonsense'.

human

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2017, 08:49:29 AM »
I find it strange that people on this site like to ridicule the masses on financial matters but balk when told to smarten up about their own gross misconceptions.

People here spend hours tinkering with spreadsheets and Fire calculators to educate themselves but can't spend five minutes to learn about a topic that seems to upset thems so much. Know what you're talking about before posting pontifications on a supposed unfair system.

In country claims are not a loop hole. If the machines rose up in the us and started attacking all humans would we say - don't let in any US refugees they are jumping the queue!!

And yeah if you are so concernd and want to learn teach yourself. If you want to wrap yourself in the warm embrace of self righteous ignorance carry on.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2017, 10:21:43 AM by human »

prognastat

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #16 on: July 18, 2017, 09:01:51 AM »
The ignorance is thinking rewarding breaking the law is a good thing. Not like any other immigrant might now think to do the same if they think they could receive a better life in Canada without having to go through the legitimate immigration procedures. It isn't like they were in a war zone in the US...

human

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2017, 09:31:37 AM »
What laws are being broken?

prognastat

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2017, 09:37:47 AM »
What laws are being broken?

Crossing a border into a country without permission from the state?

human

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2017, 09:51:58 AM »
Oh the ol catch22, be in the country to make an in country claim but get turned back at border crossings.

The system is doing it's job, they get a reception from the rcmp and then make a claim. Cbsa checks to see if it can be referred and then they are released. The other option is refugee camps which would most likely cost more, way more.

Yawn . . . Of all the things to worry about in this country this is low on the list.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2017, 10:02:51 AM by human »

PoutineLover

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #20 on: July 18, 2017, 09:57:07 AM »
As a Canadian, I don't mind offering asylum to people fleeing dangerous conditions at home, in fact I think it's our responsibility to help as many people as we can reasonably accommodate. The requirements for refugees and immigrants are different so I don't see it as a line being skipped, but rather two different paths to citizenship/residency. However, if we are going to have some kind of agreement with the States where either they or us have to accept the refugees, it would work better if the resources available to claimants were similar, since it seems they didn't have the means to make a proper case for themselves there. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have been born in a wealthy, peaceful country and I don't begrudge anyone seeking a better life, and in desperate circumstances I can understand why someone would break the law.

prognastat

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #21 on: July 18, 2017, 10:39:50 AM »
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/laws-policy/menu-safethird.asp

"Under the Agreement, refugee claimants are required to request refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in, unless they qualify for an exception to the Agreement."

human

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #22 on: July 18, 2017, 10:57:37 AM »
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/laws-policy/menu-safethird.asp

"Under the Agreement, refugee claimants are required to request refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in, unless they qualify for an exception to the Agreement."

And????? They can still come here and try and claim asylum.

Edit to add there is also a slew of exceptions.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2017, 01:14:28 PM by human »

bender

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #23 on: July 18, 2017, 11:09:04 AM »
These two both had weak cases to seek refugee status in the US.  Their cases were reviewed and denied.  They fled to Canada to try again.

Case 1: The guy got in a fight with his brothers over money.  He took a beating and wound up hospitalized.  Was there no other place he could go in his own country?  Maybe there's something missing from the article that made his case, but it seems really weak to me.

Case 2:  Fled the country fearing he would be exposed as a homosexual.  Maybe he had a real case as this is a legitimate reason. 

My guess is Canada would have rejected them as well (certainly case 1) if not for their injuries. 

scottish

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Re: Ghanaian refugees in Winnipeg
« Reply #24 on: July 18, 2017, 03:40:07 PM »
I don't think so.   What genius would give up his fingers so that a foreign government would support him?

I have mixed feelings about this case.    I think it's wonderful that we're helping people.    But we have our own problems looming on the horizon (retiring baby boomers, over dependence on resources, faltering high tech sector and so on).   

I hadn't considered queue jumping.   This needs to be stopped.

Two things:
1. What I was replying to was "The decision to decline transplant to keep that foolish dream alive at the expense of not being able to do even the most basic tasks is exceedingly dumb." That genius was not planning to lose his fingers, but now that it is a done deal, why not take advantage? I am saying why would he want a transplant now if the Canadian government is going to take care of him for the rest of his life?
2. "What genius would give up his fingers so that a foreign government would support him?" Actually, a lot of people, especially in piss poor third world country would sacrifice not just fingers, but an arm for the exchange of moving to Canada or US in search of better life. From history, we know plenty of people had died trying to reach Canada or US (or Europe) in search of better life.

Agreed, lots of people risk their life to emigrate to the first world.  But we were talking about a genius.   By definition, there aren't a lot of them, they are the exceptions.

And refusing a free transplant so you can, you know, wipe your own bum and feed yourself?    Doesn't sound like a genius either.

Edit.   I'm probably being overly pedantic here.   No offense intended.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2017, 03:47:26 PM by scottish »