“Less Complex Claims” Discrimination

September 17, 2020:
SCS starts campaign to end discrimination against atheist refugee claimants

Note: You can scroll down to the submission form or read this information and go to the form below.

Recently, one of our supporters drew SCS’ attention to systemic discrimination against atheist refugee embedded in Canada’s refugee policies.

Specifically, in a document listing “Less Complex [Refugee] Claims, atheists are excluded from the list of refugee claimants who can by-pass hearings to attain refugee status , but several religious groups are included. https://irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/information-sheets/Pages/less-complex-claims.aspx

Significantly the document referenced above lists the same countries as the Freedom of Thought Report lists as countries that persecute and even execute atheists.

SCS has begun a campaign to eliminate this discrimination by writing directly to the Hon. Marco E.L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Canadian Citizenship pointing out the following:

  • atheists are persecuted just as much and sometimes more in these countries as people belonging to the religions listed,
  • the standard in Canada for human rights is the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Supreme Court of Canada has declared several times that the charter guarantees the right to freedom from religion as much as the right to freedom of religion,
  • several atheists are currently in danger while awaiting the refugee hearings that could be avoided if they were not excluded from less complex claim status.

We have also copied this email to the shadow cabinet members of the Conservative, NDP, and Green Parties, as well as to the leader of the Bloc Québecois:

  • Raquel Dancho, Conservative – Raquel.Dancho@parl.gc.ca
  • Jenny Kwan, NDP,- Jenny.Kwan@parl.gc.ca
  • Claire Kelly, GPC – Claire.Kelly@greenparty.ca
  • Yves-François Blancher, BQ – Yves-Francois.Blanchet@parl.gc.ca


Please join us in this action by filling in the form below to contact the Hon. Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, refugees and Citizenship and all of the Standing Committee on Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship. Please take the time to email your MP as well. In the form below you can choose to send the standard text or edit it to make your own comments.