I would like to respond to the erroneous letter to the editor [Immigration hikes wasteful spending, Dec. 12, Langley Times].
The letter from writer A. Hegeman was filled with blatant inaccuracies and I am concerned that this misinformation was not fact-checked. Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but no one is entitled to their own facts.
The letter suggested that asylum seekers are coming to Canada illegally, without being screened.
That is entirely false.
Canada has a robust and world class immigration system. Each asylum claim is evaluated based on its merits and in accordance with the law.
Under international law, asylum seekers are not illegal border crossers. To suggest they are is to fear monger, plain and simple.
Mr. Hegeman’s letter also suggested that our government will allow non-Canadians to vote in our elections.
This is once again factually false.
Only Canadian citizens can vote in Canada’s elections and that has not and will not change.
I was deeply bothered at the suggestion that Canada should not let immigrants specifically from Islamic countries into our country.
We are a welcoming and diverse nation made up of people from all faiths and backgrounds.
To deny immigration applications on the basis of faith is discrimination.
That is unacceptable.
While the writer may disagree with the investments our government is making in a range of areas, they mischaracterized the reasons for these investments.
Unsubstantiated claims like the ones made by Mr. Hegeman lead to the dissemination of false information. I encourage all readers to think critically about what they read and to always verify facts.
John Aldag, Member of Parliament for Cloverdale-Langley City