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Refugee: Refugee Board

refugee: In recent years the refugee board has been under tremendous pressure to meet a 60-day statutory requirement for most asylum cases, part of the reforms made by the former Conservative government in 2012 to fast-track the refugee determination process and expedite removals of failed claimants, according to Toronto Star. It is unfair to the board that the government created this law. In a form letter, the Immigration and Refugee Board told recent asylum-seekers that they should expect their cases to be heard in between 12 and 24 months as the board prioritizes hearings based on the date they are referred by immigration and border enforcement officers, affecting both those who cross the land border and those who arrive by air. The timelines are certainly not working out, said Janet Dench of the Canadian Council for Refugees, adding that the new scheduling system is good news to those who have been languishing in the backlog but bad for recently arrived claimants. Article Continued Below While the board had been prioritizing the most recent claims to meet timelines, it stopped rescheduling cancelled and adjourned hearings and the backlog has snowballed. With limited resources and no control over the intake of new claims, the board has been unable to abide by the restrictive timelines, which fail to account for administrative delays such as when a refugee judge is sick, an interpreter is unavailable or the claimant's lawyer is absent. ( As reported in the news.