Waddell Phillips in “The Toronto Star”: Potential Class Action Launched Against the Federal Government over Immigration Detention Practices that Violate the Charter. —

Waddell Phillips along with Subodh S. Bharati and Foreman & Company have partnered together to launch a potential class action against the federal government on behalf of two former immigration detainees who were detained in provincial jails while awaiting their immigration hearings. A practice that violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The proposed class action alleges that the federal government violated section 7, 9 and 12 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in their practice of detention towards immigrants who were arrested by the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA). Immigrants who had been detained by the CBSA were placed in maximum provincial jails while waiting for their immigration hearings. These detainees’ were mixed with and treated as someone serving a criminal sentence or awaiting a criminal trial. This practice has caused many immigrants to suffer from post-traumatic stress, anxiety and depression as a result of their detention.

The lawsuit, which seeks a total of $100 million in damages, argues that the differences between an Immigration Holding Centre and a maximum-security provincial jail are vastly different and as such the practice of holding immigration detainees in provincial prisons be overturned.

Cory Wanless from Waddell Phillips PC commented in the article saying “The purpose of jails is to punish individuals who have committed serious crimes, no one who is not convicted of a crime or is not accused of a crime should be placed there.”

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