In a turn of horrific events, some Canadians seem to be facing some troubles crossing the American border due to their race and religious background. According to immigration lawyers, it has been reported that multiple Canadian Muslims have actually been turned away at Canada-U.S borders over the past few weeks. Those who have been turned away at the border state that they have received little explanation on exactly why they were unable to cross into their southern neighbor.
According to CBC, at least six Canadian Muslim men have been denied entry into the US in the past two weeks. The men, and in some instances, their entire family were denied entry with little explanation as to why they were unable to enter the United States.
While many of those who have been denied entry have chosen to remain nameless, Imran Ally, a chaplain with the Peel Regional Police recalls that he was attempting to cross the border for a wedding when him, his wife, and three children were denied entry.
Ally told CBC that after five hours of questioning, his family was turned away from the border because his name "matches that of a bad guy."
Ally and his family were then asked to apply for visas at the U.S. consulate before returning to the US border, something that is an unusual request for Canadian travelers.
However, since Trump's travel ban, many Canadian Muslims have felt threatened or minoritized at the US border. The ban allows border officials to block refugees and visitors from seven Muslim-majority countries across the globe. However, Canadians shouldn't be feeling the brunt end of this ban.
While six Canadian Muslim men have been turned away in the past two weeks, this isn't a new problem for Canadian travelers.
According to the Guardian, concerns that US border agents were targeting minorities were present back in 2017 when a Canadian Muslim was denied entry into the states after being interrogated about her faith and views on Donald Trump at the US border.
Fadwa Alaoui had been a Canadian for more than 20 years when she was stopped on the way to Vermont and questions for over four hours before she was turned away. Many of the questions had to do with her religion such as "How often do you go the mosque?"
However, according to CBC, US customs officers are able to turn anyone away from the border that they determine a danger to their country and no Canadian actually has the right to enter the states.
One Canadian law firm, who represents the six Muslim Canadians who were banned entry this month state, "It's hard to know what you're going up against when you're not told why you're denied entry. The fact that they're all Muslims, that raises some concerns about whether these people are being targeted or if this is a new form of some sort of ban."