Canada sure does love itself a tangle of red tape. As someone who married a 'foreigner,' and through sheer grit and determination eventually dragged him back to the homeland, I can only empathize with an American woman threatened with deportation following her husband's death.
Tarra Barnett (born Kromminga) had served her application, and expected her permanent residency to come through by 31 October. However, her Canadian husband Clinton Barnett passed away suddenly on 12 October. He was 30 and had no previous health indications.
To add insult to injury, his wife was three months pregnant at the time of her loss. Ms Kromminga and her now six-month-old daughter Sophia are being told to leave the country by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
In a move that seems somewhat crass given the circumstances, the CIC has told Ms Kromminga she will need to reapply for permanent residency "to be assessed on humanitarian and compassionate (H&C) grounds" even though she was likely mere days away from having her original application completed.
"Ms. Kromminga did not submit documentation that would show that she would face unusual, undeserved or disproportionate hardship if she and her child were to return to the U.S.," said the CIC.
Seems like the CIC is intent on driving the mom out of the country by making it awkward and complicated for her to stay. Presumably Kromminga has family here—her late husband's family—and friends. She has made Canada her home. It seems absurd to threaten this mom with deportation because a 'T' wasn't crossed.
I remember all too well the 40-odd page application, and an intentionally confusing and complex process. Perhaps the CIC should concentrate its energies on deporting illegal immigrants and harboured criminals instead of penalizing the spouses of Canadian-born citizens. Just a thought.
You tell me: Did Canadian Immigration get its priorities wrong in this case, or is it just sticking to standard protocol?