While I have written about her a couple of time in the past, the ordeal of Lucene Charles is not yet over.
Because she failed to complete the paperwork to achieve permanent residency status when she married a Canadian 15 years ago, the St. Vincent native, the mother of four children, three of whom were born in Canada, still faces deportation.
Charles is the kind of person we would hope to have in the neighborhood, a productive person who works for the betterment of her community. Employed full time as an assistant to an administrator at St. Joseph’s Healthcare in Hamilton, she was recently honoured as a YWCA Woman of Distinction in May for her extensive volunteer work.
Despite the fact that she would be an obvious asset to Canada, because of an oversight in paperwork, she faces being sent back to St. Vincent, an impoverished Caribbean island where three of her children, born in Canada, will go to for the first time if she cannot find adequate placement for them.
You can read the complete story here, and I will only offer the following observation:
I have come to the point in my life where I strongly believe that so many of the so-called rules (immigration-refugee rules, for example) should only be treated as broad guidelines, and that each situation has to be judged on its own merits, and by that I mean excluding considerations like whether a decision may set an undesirable precedent.
Decency and humanity, two of the surest criteria one can embrace, should and must be the only criteria.