Advertisement

Deaf teenager granted immigration to Canada

Karen Talosig came to Canada seven years ago in search of a better life and to support her daughter back in the Philippines.

She has been trying for five years to bring daughter Jazmine to B.C., but Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) notified her last week that the teenager is considered “medically inadmissible” because she is deaf.

“I strongly disagree with the decision that they made,” said Karen.

“I think it needs serious reconsideration,” said Helene Whitfield, Karen’s friend and former employer. “I think the visa officer made a mistake. I’m not sure, because no one is telling us what the decision was based upon.”

On Wednesday, June 24, it was announced Jazmine will be able to come to Canada and live with her mother.

Jazmine has attended a school for the deaf in the Philippine capital of Manila since she was five years old. She is now 14 and lives with her grandparents since her father passed away.

Story continues below advertisement

Her mother says Jazmine is a bright, happy, energetic girl and she had already been accepted at a Burnaby school for the deaf at no extra cost to the taxpayer.

“I can give 100 per cent assurance that she won’t be a burden,” said Karen. “Firstly, I am working. I’ve got a full-time job. I work four jobs right now.”

“The assistant superintendent of the Burnaby School Board has already confirmed via letter to CIC that no additional funding is required for Jazmine,” said Whitfield.

Since Karen couldĀ prove her daughter will not be a burden on the taxpayer, she wondered if Jazmine is being discriminated against because she is deaf.

“How does a system work when you have checks and balances in place and yet they don’t apply?” asked Whitfield.

If Jazmine was refused, Karen would have been forced to leave Canada in August.

Previous story from John Daly on Jazmine being denied immigration:

-with files from John Daly

Story continues below advertisement