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Andrew Swan, MLA Minto
April 6, 2017

Robson Hall Research-a-thon

Madame Speaker, the plight of refugees making their way to Manitoba has touched the hearts of many. I am proud that students at Manitoba’s law school decided to do something about it.

On Feb 4th, 50 law students from the University of Manitoba’s Robson Hall Law School participated in a 12 hour nation-wide research-a-thon to support the fair treatment of refugees in Canada. This event responded to the travel ban, imposed in the United States earlier this year, which unfairly targeted predominantly Muslim nations and resulted in many seeking a brighter future in Canada.

This group of bright and dedicated students joined hundreds of other law students across the country in an effort to stand up for people who are easily victimized and require protection from injustice. The students used their research skills, knowledge, and legal education to assist the Canadian Council for Refugees as they challenged the Canada-U.S Safe Third Country Agreement. This response also mobilized more than 200 law professors to call on the federal government to drop the agreement.

It’s clear that there is sound legal research and advice to back up these efforts. Our NDP caucus understands this, which is why we call for the suspension of the Safe Third Country Agreement with the U.S.

Canada has a long history of welcoming refugees and immigrants, with a national identity built on the values of diversity, acceptance and tolerance, I’m proud that Manitoba students have carried on this tradition, donating their time, their skills, and their heart’s energy. Lawyers speak for those unable to speak for themselves.

I want to honour these Robson Hall law students for their participation in this important research-a-thon and for their dedication to making Manitoba an opening and welcoming place for newcomers.