Order Fixing December 5, 2018 as the day on which sections 11 and 12 of that Act come into force: SI/2018-109
Canada Gazette, Part II, Volume 152, Number 25
SI/2018-109 December 12, 2018
AN ACT TO AMEND THE CITIZENSHIP ACT AND TO MAKE CONSEQUENTIAL AMENDMENTS TO ANOTHER ACT
Order Fixing December 5, 2018 as the day on which sections 11 and 12 of that Act come into force
P.C. 2018-1486 November 29, 2018
Her Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, pursuant to subsection 27(4) of An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act, chapter 14 of the Statutes of Canada, 2017, fixes December 5, 2018 as the day on which sections 11 and 12 of that Act come into force.
(This note is not part of the Order.)
Pursuant to subsection 27(4) of An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act, this Order in Council fixes December 5, 2018, as the day on which sections 11 and 12 of that Act come into force.
This Order in Council brings into force the remaining provisions of An Act to Amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act. This will enable the Government to strengthen citizenship program integrity and protect the value of Canadian citizenship by introducing the authority for the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship to seize documents provided for the administration of the Citizenship Act when there are reasonable grounds to believe that the documents have been fraudulently or improperly obtained or used. It also provides the authority to make regulations governing the seizure, storage, and disposition of documents believed to be fraudulent.
Bill C-6, An Act to amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act, received royal assent on June 19, 2017. Most provisions in the Act have been brought into force. The remaining provisions, which required corresponding regulatory amendments in order to implement, allow the Minister to seize and detain documents provided to him or her for the purposes of this Act if he or she has reasonable grounds to believe that they were fraudulently or improperly obtained or used or that the measure is necessary to prevent their fraudulent or improper use. The Citizenship Regulations have been amended to support the coming into force of these new provisions and to provide clarity and consistency in establishing the processes and steps required to seize documents.
Having clear authorities in the Citizenship Act to seize documents believed to be fraudulent also contributes to addressing findings in the spring 2016 report of the Auditor General on Detecting and Preventing Fraud in the Citizenship Program.
This Order in Council brings into force the legislative authorities relating to seizure of documents under the Citizenship Act.
With these provisions, the Citizenship Act authorizes the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship to seize and detain documents that he or she has reasonable grounds to believe were fraudulently or improperly used. The overall goal is to enhance program integrity by preventing applicants from obtaining citizenship through the fraudulent or improper use of documents (i.e. altered passports, health cards, drivers’ licences, etc.). The provisions benefit both clients and decision makers by providing clarity around operational procedures. Procedural fairness policies apply and clients have the opportunity to provide an explanation or additional submissions responding to a citizenship officer’s concerns. These authorities are not expected to add a financial burden for the Department.
In the House of Commons, the Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration and, in the Senate, the Standing Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology conducted hearings on An Act to Amend the Citizenship Act and to make consequential amendments to another Act and heard from several stakeholder organizations. During the legislative process, there were no concerns or issues raised about the document seizure authority.
The Office of the Privacy Commissioner (OPC) was consulted regarding the privacy implications and a privacy impact assessment will be submitted to the OPC in the fall of 2018.
Legislation and Program Policy
Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada
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