Thank you very much.
Thank you to all our guests today.
I also want to thank the delegation from Bangladesh for joining us at our meeting today.
As a member of Parliament from an urban Toronto riding, I can tell you that immigration case work and visitor visas take up the bulk of the interactions we have with constituents. Naturally, I was very interested in the findings of the Auditor General with respect to locally engaged staff and their access to visa records.
First of all, it's a monumental task. As was pointed out, there are 176 missions in 110 different countries. Global Affairs employs 5,000 locally engaged staff, so I understand the immense complexity of this.
I appreciate the honesty of pointing out that we cannot operate in a zero-risk environment, because we are operating in many different parts of the world where there are different cultures and standards, all of which require us to be extra diligent in what we do.
I know that in my MP's office when, for instance, it comes to accessing a file, there are controls in place. In fact, there is a designated number, as you all know, that MP offices have to go through.
It really makes no sense to me, when you have a very specific rule in your code of conduct, that locally engaged staff should be using any aspect of their job to benefit themselves, that they would have broad access to the case system and be able to even type their name into the system and pull up their file. To me, that could be prevented by implementing a simple system control.
I'd like to hear why such a control, on a system level, was not put in place? Yes, the rule exists but we all know that crimes occur out of convenience. If you have a door and it's supposed to be locked, no one is supposed to go through it, but if you leave it unlocked, someone is bound to just pull it open. Why wasn't that control put in on a system level?