On this blog, we used to post information about our visits to the border at Roxham Road, USA side.
Since the closure of Roxham Road on Friday 24 March 2023, we're attempting to keep a log of the info we have about refugees who have been returned to the US.
Sur ce blogue, nous avons affiché des informations sur nos visites à la frontière, Roxham Road, États Unis. Depuis la fermeture de Roxham Road le vendredi 24 mars 2023, nous essayons de tenir un répertoire des informations que nous avons cueillies sur les réfugiés qui ont été renvoyés aux États-Unis.
This was our first visit to Roxham Road on the US side since the lifting of the testing requirements to return to Canada.
It was a grey, damp and cold day. When we arrived two taxis were already at the border bringing two families. The first had already crossed and we could see them in the tent. The second family was likely from Haiti: mother, father and three children under 10 years of age. They took a few warm items and then entered Canada without incident. The RCMP officer did insist on directing them to the "official border crossing'' at Lacolle but no one showed any signs of being deterred to cross at Roxham Road. He also told them as he did subsequent people that they had a right to the services of a lawyer. This information is not part of the RCMP protocol and it is not clear why he told them this.
After a few minutes a taxi arrived bringing a young woman with her two daughters aged about 3 and 7 years. She spoke French and it turned out she was from Djibouti in east Africa. She took some things for the little girls and then crossed into Canada without incident.
We then spotted someone walking down Roxham Road towards us. They had obviously been dropped off further up the road. As he approached we saw a tall young man in his mid-20s. We spoke briefly. He was very polite and very nervous and just wanted to get across. He didn't take anything. He listened to the officer and then crossed over.
Finally a private car arrived with three men in their late 20's or early 30's. They told us they were from Turkey but they spoke virtually no English. We persuaded them to take some gloves and hats and they went to the border, crossing immediately as the RCMP officer did not tell them to stop to listen to his speech. One of the men had his hands in his pockets and the officer told him in an angry tone to take his hands out of his pockets. He repeated it as the young man did not understand. We were concerned that something might happen, but he seems to have taken his hands out of his pockets and they were ushered inside the tent.
Including the first family that we did not interact with, a total of some 15 people crossed into Canada this afternoon.
The earlier border visit reports were written by the volunteers who were at the border on that day, the later updates about the situation in the US are an attempt to keep a log of what we find out through our own visits in the US, or through contacts in the US.