First, here is Mr. Robitaille’s article published in the Journal de Québec:
Second, here is its translation into English:
“If there is a place in this crisis where the imperiousness of the Trudeau government appears, it is at Roxham Road.
Yesterday, when the Canada-US border was announced to be closed, Ottawa refused to block this crossing near Lacolle customs, famous since the 2017 migrant crisis.
Through this, 30 to 80 “irregular” refugee claimants still enter every day (the figures vary depending on whether it is Ottawa or the customs union speaking).
During a pandemic, what to do with migrants who come from a country where they are not in danger within the meaning of international conventions? For health reasons, wouldn’t it be better to block them?
This is what the Legault government is arguing. He recalls this “patient 31”, in South Korea, who canceled the efforts of the first 30 by not respecting the confinement instructions.
Welcoming migrants mobilizes nurses, police, etc., who could be useful elsewhere in times of crisis. Currently, asylum seekers are housed in a YMCA in downtown Montreal.
The Trudeau government believes, on the contrary, that it is better to let them in. Thus, the “traceability” of possible infected will be easier. Better than if they smuggled through the woods. (Isn’t there still a lot of snow in the forest? And hasn’t Ottawa placed thousands of cameras along the border?)
It is unclear whether Ottawa is really asking the migrants what is required of returning citizens: 14 days of isolation.
Tuesday morning was no. A symptom test would suffice. Later, Ottawa turned around to promise the opposite. TVA News clearly demonstrated on Tuesday that isolation was relative, with asylum seekers leaving and continuously entering the YMCA.
” Not acceptable “
This is what enrages François Legault, who seems to hold back with both hands to let people know. Yesterday, in a press briefing, he still allowed himself this: “Regarding Roxham Road, this is not acceptable. Minister Chrystia Freeland had just promised to “take care” of the migrants? But where? In Trenton? Nothing was yet clear.
Legault, as we know, never liked the federal management of Roxham Road. In August 2017, he deplored that the border was a “colander” under Justin Trudeau, and that the latter had made a mistake by inviting “all the misery of the world”.
At the time, the declaration was daring. Philippe Couillard had accused him of “stirring up concerns”. But today, with the COVID-19 tsunami coming, the picture has changed. As proof, in the Liberal caucus, we support the CAQ PM.
The former minister of the Couillard government, Gaétan Barrette, hastened to tweet yesterday: “About Roxham road @francoislegault is right. Unacceptable. Federal responsibility. New York State is the most contaminated. These people may also come from contagious areas. “
Should Québec send the Sûreté du Québec to Roxham Road to take care of the border, as Valérie Plante [Mayor of Montreal] was forced to send agents to the airport?