Mr. Speaker, when I was at home in my riding over December and January, I had an opportunity to meet with many of my constituents, who absolutely understand that our system is being abused.
To be clear, Canada has the most fair and generous system in the world. Canadians know this. Whether addressing refugee reforms, human smuggling or implementing the use of biometric data, Canadians are very aware that all of these things need to be addressed. That is what we are doing through Bill C-31.
This bill would provide more protection more quickly to those who are truly in need. It would weed out the bogus claimants who are abusing our generosity. It would save Canadian taxpayers at least, as we have said many times, $1.6 billion over a five year period.
To underscore my comments on these facts, I would like to quote from The Edmonton Journal editorial, “Good moves on refugees”, from February 17:
Given the financial stress placed on our system by those numbers, there has to be a more efficient, cost-effective means of weeding out the bogus claimants from Europe and elsewhere. Simply put, we cannot continue to give everyone the benefit of the doubt when it costs that much money and taxes our social systems unduly to do so.