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Judges show `enormous variation' in how they treat refugees, study finds

posted Apr 20, 2012, 9:47 PM by Milorad Borota   [ updated Apr 20, 2012, 9:48 PM ]
By Don Butler, Postmedia News March 22, 2012

Luck of the draw often determines whether refugee applicants succeed or fail at the Federal Court of Canada, according to a major new study that concludes reform is urgently needed.

Sean Rehaag, an assistant professor at Osgoode Hall Law School, reviewed more than 23,000 applications for judicial review of refugee determinations filed between 2005 and 2010. Almost all were filed by people whose claims for protection had been denied by the Immigration and Refugee Board.

The study - by far the largest of its sort ever undertaken in Canada - says its most remarkable finding is the ``enormous variation'' in the rate at which individual Federal Court judges grant leave to refugee claimants seeking to have their cases reviewed by the court.

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