Bordering the Pandemic: COVID-19, Immigration, and Emergency

UBC Migration Speakers Series by Asha Kaushal & Bethany Hastie

December 1, 2020

Bordering the Pandemic: COVID-19, Immigration, and Emergency

An online talk by:
Dr. Asha Kaushal
Assistant Professor, UBC Allard School of Law

&
Dr. Bethany Hastie
Assistant Professor, UBC Allard School of Law

with
Devin Eeg
Graduate, UBC Allard School of Law Graduate Program

Tuesday, December 1, 2020
12:30 – 2:00 p.m. (PST)

[ Abstract ]
In March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic led to the closure of Canada’s international borders. This closure was not absolute; it was marked by several exceptions. Those exceptions were contained in a series of Orders-in-Council (OiCs) which became the Canadian government’s mechanism of choice for governing the border. OiCs are swift, efficient, and flexible legal instruments, which makes them well-suited to a public health emergency. In this talk, we explore the nature, function and impact of regulating Canada’s borders through OiCs. Focusing on both the procedural and substantive dimensions of OiCs, we interrogate their potential political, legal, and social consequences. We draw on the theory of the emergency to unpack and illustrate how this unfolds, and to explain why it creates serious challenges for longer-term immigration regulation. We demonstrate how the use and content of the pandemic OiCs with respect to the border has reignited reliance on status-based distinctions in immigration regulation, and we consider the ways in which this may produce discriminatory effects at and within Canada’s borders.

Please RSVP for this event here

Beyond the 2018 Global Compact for Migration

The Future of International Cooperation on Migration Governance - February 5th, 2020

 

 

The Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law and the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism at McGill university Faculty of Law, hosted a panel discussion on the future of the Global Compact for Migration, featuring:

  • His Excellency Ambassador Juan José Gómez Camacho, Ambassador of Mexico to Canada, former Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations between 2016 and 2019 and
  • Hon. Luise Arbour, recently the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General on International Migration, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, and a former Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

The panel discussion was hosted and moderated by:

  • Pr François Crépeau is the Hans & Tamar Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Lawand the Director of the McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism. Pr Crépeau was the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants from 2011 to 2017.

According to the United Nations, the global number of international migrants reached 272 million in 2019. This figure will increase due to population growth, enhanced connectivity, trade, rising inequality, demographic imbalances and climate change. Migration provides immense opportunity and benefits for home and host communities. At the same time, due to poor regulation and exploitation, migration can also create significant challenges for states and individuals alike. The 2018 Global Compact for Migration is the first-ever United Nations instrument on a common approach to the governance of international migration in all its dimensions. Our distinguished panelists were both instrumental to the crafting and adoption of the Global Compact. Although non-binding, the Compact is grounded in the values of state sovereignty, responsibility sharing, non-discrimination and human rights. It recognizes that a cooperative approach is needed to optimize the overall benefits of migration, while addressing its challenges for individuals and communities in countries of origin, transit and destination.

 

30 Years Of Child Rights: Progress And Challenges

Sept 20, 2019

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Organised by the IBCR and McGill University Faculty of Law, co sponsored by the CHRLP and Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law (Francois Crepeau). This conference gathered internationally renowned experts in the field of children’s rights and with the exceptional participation of Najat Maalla M’jid, the United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General on violence against children.

The panel reviewed the progress made since the creation of the CRC 30 years ago and discuss current matters and situations to assess the achievements and challenges still pending regarding children’s rights worldwide.

https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/billets-30-years-of-child-rights-progress-and-challenges-71653021115#

 

Migration and Climate Change: Legal and Practical Challenges

Event: November 29, 2017, Room 316 NCDH, McGill Faculty of Law, 13:00-14:30

In 1990, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change underscored that the gravest effects of climate change may be those on human migration. Although environmental change related human movement is not a new phenomenon, there is a growing concern that the numbers of persons displaced as a result of the current and future trends in global climate change could turn out to be unmanageably large. This concern has sparked debates in legal, policy and academic circles on what should be done to address the plight of those who migrate or are displaced because of events that have resulted from or become aggravated by climate change. The talk will engage with literature proposing legal and policy responses to address this phenomenon, including creative interpretation of existing international law, and the adoption of a new multilateral instrument (a stand-alone multilateral instrument or a protocol to the Refugee Convention or the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and it will also discuss the developing jurisprudence on climate change and migration in New Zealand’s courts.

Speaker: Hanna Haile

Hanna Haile is Steinberg Post-Doctoral Fellow at the McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism. Her research and writing interests lie in the fields of international human rights, migration, environmental law, sustainability and intellectual property rights, with a particular interest on the question of how cultural phenomena shape and are shaped by law. Recently, she has been working on a project on the impacts of the activities of copper mining companies on communities living on the Copperbelt of Zambia. She holds a J.S.D. and an LL.M. from Cornell Law School and LL.B. from the University of Asmara. Prior to joining the McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, she has worked for the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Cornell University, the University of Asmara and the High Court of Asmara in Eritrea.

 

The Labouring Subject of Refugee Economies

Event: November 23, 2017, Room 16, OCDH, McGill Faculty of Law, 10:00am-12:00pm

Most writings on refugee economy or the immigrant economy refer to changes in the immigrant labour absorption policies of the Western governments. In these writings the refugee economy or the immigrant economy never features directly; refugees are seen as economic actors in the market. But we do not get a full picture of why capitalism in late twentieth or early twenty first century needs these refugee or immigrant labour as economic actors. The organic link between the immigrant as an economic actor and the global capitalist economy seems to escape the analysis in these writings. Yet, if immigration policies produce precarious labour, this has general significance for the task of theorising the migrant as living labour. The question of the production of living labour is important because it puts in a critical perspective the necessity of the states and the international regime of protection to synchronise the economic and the political strategies of protection. Yet the disjuncture between the two strategies of protection is not only typical of the postcolonial parts of the globe, the disjuncture is evident in the developed countries. Globally, one can say, capital sets in motion movements of labour within a specific field of force that dictates how and why migrant labour is to be harnessed, disciplined, and governed (for instance the dominant presence of immigrant labour in logistics, health care, agriculture, etc.), and that shapes the links between “strategies” (that control migrants once they are in motion) and the mechanisms that set these movements in motion.

Speaker: Ranabir Samaddar, O’Brien Fellow in Residence

Ranabir Samaddar belongs to the critical school of thinking and is considered as one of the foremost theorists in the field of migration and forced migration studies. The much-acclaimed The Politics of Dialogue (2004) was a culmination of his long work on justice, rights, and peace.He is currently the Distinguished Chair in Migration and Forced Migration Studies, Calcutta Research Group, India.

Respondent: Megan Bradley, Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Development Studies at McGill University.

Professor Bradley’s research focuses on the rights and wellbeing of refugees and internally displaced persons, as well as on questions of transitional justice, reconciliation, and accountability for human rights violations. She holds a doctorate in International Relations from St Antony’s College, University of Oxford, and is the author of Refugee Repatriation: Justice, Responsibility and Redress (Cambridge University Press, 2013). In late 2015, Megan published a book entitled Forced Migration, Reconciliation and Justice with MQUP which explores the harsh reality that more people were displaced globally in early 2015 by conflict and human rights violations than at any time since the Second World War.

Respondent: Hanna Haile, Steinberg Post-Doctoral Fellow at the McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism.

Hanna Haile’s research and writing interests lie in the fields of international human rights, migration, environmental law, sustainability and intellectual property rights, with a particular interest on the question of how cultural phenomena shape and are shaped by law. Recently, she has been working on a project on the impacts of the activities of copper mining companies on communities living on the Copperbelt of Zambia. She holds a J.S.D. and an LL.M. from Cornell Law School and LL.B. from the University of Asmara. Prior to joining the McGill Center for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, she has worked for the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Cornell University, the University of Asmara and the High Court of Asmara in Eritrea.