Canada’s asylum system re-victimizes LGBTQ refugees

Canada 1September 30, 2015 – Reported by the Toronto Star – Val Kalende doesn’t understand why Canada’s refugee system is more interested in her sex life than the persecution she experienced as a lesbian in her native Uganda. “They wanted the names of my girlfriends and all of my previous relationships and their support letters to prove that,” said Kalende, a Ugandan gay activist who made an asylum claim in Canada in July for persecution on the grounds of sexual orientation. “It made me feel horrible. They just focused on these private, intimate things about my partners, sex life and breakups, instead of the way I was persecuted back home. There’s something about the (asylum) process that breaks you down, that breaks your emotions down.” The Toronto woman’s experience was echoed by the participants of a groundbreaking study to be released Tuesday by the Envisioning Global LGBT Human Rights research team based at York University. “Is Canada a safe haven for LGBT refugees?” asked the 59-page report by the same title. “We can answer a qualified yes — however, the study identifies serious obstacles.” One of those obstacles, it said, is the Canadian asylum system’s disproportionate emphasis on “credibility” in the claims process, which places the onus on LGBT claimants to produce highly personal evidence to substantiate their sexual orientation or gender identity…story continues below…

Source: Canada’s asylum system re-victimizes LGBTQ refugees | Toronto Star

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