CBA on Bill C-23, Preclearance Act

  • December 04, 2017

Michael Greene appeared on behalf of the CBA before the Senate Committee on National Security and Defence to present a submission on Bill C-23, Preclearance Act, 2016, prepared by the CBA Immigration Law Section, CBA Criminal Justice Section and the CBA Commodity Tax, Customs and Trade Section.

In the submission, the CBA Sections comment that they remain supportive of the concept of preclearance areas, and recognize the economic benefits that come from the free flow of goods and people across our border with the United States of America. However, it is not necessary that these benefits be gained at the expense of Canadians’ rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

They are also mindful that Bill C-23 implements the Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine, and Air Transport Preclearance between the Government of Canada and the Government of the United States of America (LMRA) signer by Canada and the US in March, 2015. This agreement was negotiated when both Canada and the US were represented by different leaders and governments, with substantially different approaches and agendas. Those differences warrant a re-examination of the scope and content of both the LMRA and of Bill C-23. Several recent developments give rise to serious concerns about how the significantly expanded powers of US officers operating on Canadian soil could be exercised.

The CBA Sections continue to assert that Bill C-23 unnecessarily and unjustifiably sacrifices the rights and liberties of Canadian travelers, and urge that the Bill be amended to address these concerns.

Read the submission