September 27, 2013 10:54 pm
Updated: September 29, 2013 12:19 am

Watch: Lawsuit alleges U.S. guards discriminate against Canadians


A lawsuit is being launched by businesses on both sides of the 49th parallel, alleging that U.S. border agents are biased against Canadians.

The speculation comes from an online forum allegedly used by U.S. border agents, who like to vent about how much they dislike Canadian attitudes.

A top U.S. Immigration lawyer in Bellingham has now filed an amicus brief at a U.S. Federal Appeal Court.

Greg Boos says this US Customs and Border Protection forum, which talks about “whiny” Canadians, shows a number of CBP officers are anti-immigrant and over-zealous.

“I think it is a smoking gun,” says Boos. “I think now that it has been discovered, the CBP has a duty to go in and investigate it.”

Lawyer Catherine Sas said on Unfiltered with Jill Krop tonight the mentality of border guards has been polarized over the last couple of years.

Watch: Unfiltered’s conversation on U.S. border guard bias

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“What you are seeing is not uncommon, and it is not uncommon just for American border guards, it is not uncommon for Canadian border guards. It is the mentality out there right now to really make life difficult for people crossing the border,” says Sas.

Jessica Goldstein was turned away at the American border for admitting she smoked pot over the Labour Day weekend.

“I am still pretty frustrated,” said Goldstein, speaking on Unfiltered tonight. “I just do not understand. It just feels totally arbitrary. I feel like I was picked on and I know I am not the only one.”

Goldstein says she has been banned from visiting the U.S. until she gets a waiver for admissibility, which could take anywhere from three months to a year to get and is quite costly.

Goldstein says if she could do it all again, she would never admit to smoking marijuana.

Sas says very often it is a very subjective process.

“Nine times out of ten, my clients will go back and forth across the border and they will be fine. And then, all of a sudden they would have a problematic experience. A common thing that I hear is — I’ve been coming up to Canada for 20 years, my DUI is 25 years old, why am I having a problem now? Such that, the past 25 years of positive experience should mean that this isn’t a worry for me anymore. That is not the case. And when somebody finds something and you are still in admissible, it’s a problem.”

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