Official Opposition Citizenship and Immigration critic Lysane Blanchette-Lamothe (Pierrefonds-Dollars) made the following statement on Citizenship Week 2013:
“Each year, thousands of people are granted Canadian citizenship. On the occasion of this Citizenship Week, the New Democratic Party is proud to join Canadians who are celebrating the privilege of living in such a diverse society. The NDP is proud of its caucus which reflects Canadian diversity.
Canadian traditions and values are a model worldwide making our country a destination of choice for immigrants and refugees alike. New Democrats are committed to maintaining this tradition of social justice, openness and equality for a fairer, more prosperous Canada.
The NDP believes that people who are eligible for Canadian citizenship should be able to obtain it in a fair and timely manner. Unfortunately, delays at Citizenship and Immigration Canada have multiplied under the Conservative government. Due to Conservative cuts citizenship applications now take 25 to 35 months to be processed compared to the average one year. We committed to work with our provincial and community partners to improve processing delays as well as ensuring that new Canadian families are reunited as quickly as possible.
The NDP would like to congratulate those who are taking the oath of citizenship this week and reiterate that New Democrats are just like you; we understand your reality and we will listen to your concerns and defend you in Ottawa.”