Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
Thank you to our witnesses for their thoughtful presentations.
I'd like to begin my questions with this premise. I think the committee is grappling with the issue on excessive demand as it is applied to a group of people, in this instance, people with different abilities. It's been advanced on the issue and the application of this policy on the principle of fairness.
To that end, what we do know, and I want to put it on the record, is that the assessment process that the government uses is a flawed process. The figures they've come up with in identifying the cost of what is deemed to be excessive demand are not accurately backed up. Its application in the process of evaluating different people is also flawed in that process.
First, I'd like to establish this. Canada, of course, has made commitments in our Canadian charter to equality and human rights and the rights of people with disabilities. We have enshrined those rights provincially and federally in our human rights legislation. We're also a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. However, we have an immigration policy that clearly discriminates against people with different abilities.
On that premise, what we heard yesterday—it was virtually unanimous—is that all of the witnesses said the government should repeal the section “excessive demand”, because it simply violates our basic human rights.
On that principle, not on the issue of cost, but on the principle of that violation, could I get quick answers from each of the panellists on whether you agree that it is a violation of our basic human rights with respect to this provision of the immigration policy?