On this blog page, we are posting information about our visits to the border at Roxham Road, USA side.
For more information about the purpose of these visits go to the news page.
We have also started to post our newsletters on the blog.
Sur ce blogue, nous affichons des informations sur nos visites à la frontière, Roxham Road, États Unis.
Pour plus d'info sur le but de ces visites allez sur la page nouvelles.
Aussi, nous avons commencé à poster nos infolettres sur le blogue.
Sunday April 14, 2019. Afternoon. Roxham Road, USA.
A crisp spring day - still quite chilly. Three people crossed into Canada today while we were there.
The first taxi brought a young woman from Zimbabwe. She was anxious and totally focused on crossing as quickly as possible. She acknowledged that she understood the RCMP officer's message and quickly crossed over.
A second taxi arrived with a mother and son (aged about 14) from Nicaragua, and not warmly dressed. They were very nervous but very friendly and were grateful to receive some warm things. The mom was a bit surprised to hear it could still be cold here in April. When we said that this was El Norte , she smiled to hear some Spanish. They entered Canada without incident.
RCMP officers stuck to their protocol and behaved appropriately.
Sunday April 7, 2019. Evening. Roxham Road, USA.
No one arrived while we were at the border today.
Sunday March 31, 2019. Evening. Roxham Road, USA.
When we were entering the US at a local border crossing there was a delay. We said we were going to greet refugees at Roxham Road and the custom's officer decided to call someone to ask if it was OK for us to enter. The call took a while and he must have been reassured, because he let us enter.
At 6:15 a taxi pulled up with a lone passenger: a tall black man who looked about 40 years old. He was not dressed for the weather but did not take any warm things. He was very anxious to cross: hurriedly getting his luggage and going to the border. He answered the RCMP in English and entered Canada without incident.
Sunday, March 24 2019. Afternoon. Roxham Road, USA.
Four people crossed into Canada while we were at Roxham Road. The first taxi brought a young man in his twenties from India. He had been some time in the USA but was afraid to return home. He
seemed hopeful when he crossed over, after saying he understood he would be arrested.
A bit later a second taxi brought a young family of African origin. The man accepted a hat and thanked us, but was afraid to say where he was from. He was trembling with fear. His wife seemed less afraid. She was carrying their young child (about two years old) who pointed to her father and said ''My Daddy'' . The little girl smiled at us as her mother walked into Canada.
The RCMP officers were low-key and respectful.
Sunday March 10th in the evening and Sunday March 17th in the afternoon. Roxham Road, USA.
No one came to Roxham Road when we were there on these two dates. This reflects the decrease in the arrivals of people at Roxham Road in 2019.
So far this year, 871 refugees arrived in January and 800 in February. This is 48% less than the numbers from 2018: in January 2018 1,458 people entered through Roxham Road and in February the number was 1,486 people.
Sunday, March 3 2019. Afternoon at Roxham Road, USA.
A relatively mild day, we were able to stay outside without starting to freeze! In total six people crossed into Canada while we were there. None of the people who crossed were wearing winter boots, or good winter coats.
Two men of African origin men arrived first. We could not make out where they said they were from. They were happy to take hats and scarves. About a half hour later a taxi brought an African woman with a 2-year old girl child. She was not interested in any warm things. The taxi driver told us they were from Swaziland (a small country in southern Africa).
Shortly after, another taxi brought a young man from Ethiopia who was happy to put on a woollen hat, scarf and gloves. He crossed just after the woman and little girl crossed and he was made to wait outside the building for several minutes. We were glad he was protected from the cold.
The last person to arrive by taxi was a young woman from Lebanon. She spoke very little English, but was happy to take gloves and a scarf. We gave her a hug and wished her well in Canada.
The RCMP officers were friendly. One of them asked the man from Ethiopia where he was from, but other than that they stuck to their protocol.
Sunday, February 27 2019. Afternoon at Roxham Road, US.
Only one person crossed into Canada while we were there. A man of African origin arrived in the taxi. He did not say much but was happy to get mitts and a scarf. The RCMP officers respected their protocol and he crossed into Canada without incident.
Sunday, February 17th 2019. Afternoon at Roxham Road, USA.
A cold winter day at the border. While we were there a total of 8 people (4 adults and four children) crossed into Canada.
The first taxi to arrive brought a friendly man in his early thirties. He spoke little English and said he came from Yemen via Saudi Arabia. He spoke Arabic with the taxi driver. He did not need any warm things (although he was only wearing shoes). The RCMP officer spoke to him stating the protocol. At first he hesitated and the officer repeated the message. Finally the taxi driver said in Arabic 'Go, go go!'. He then crossed into Canada.
Next arrived a young woman from Uganda. She was very nervous but open to talking with us. She accepted several warm things and we exchanged a hug before she went to the border's edge. She waited there (as we explained to her) but no RCMP officer came. After a couple of minutes an officer stuck his head outside the building and said, 'You are under arrest, come over.' and she went.
Finally came a taxi with two families of African origin. One family was a young woman with a baby and the second was a woman in her late 30's with three children (aged about 14, 10 and 8).No one was dressed appropriately for the cold and they accepted some warm things. They went to the border and walked toward the RCMP officer who told them to stop more than once, but the woman with the baby, who was in front just walked by him and the rest followed. The officer was very angry and stopped them outside the building and told them they were under arrest. He berated them and asked 'Why didn't you stop when I told you? Then he started asking questions including: 'Where's the father?' ' What documents do you have?' He then took the woman with the baby inside the building and made the other family wait outside in the cold despite their inadequate clothing. They waited about 10 minutes before he took them inside.
Sunday, February 10th 2019. Afternoon at Roxham Road, USA.
The RCMP officer said it had been a quiet day so far. Just before 4pm a taxi brought one person,
a Spanish speaking man about mid 30's in age. He didn't take any warm things on offer and went straight over. Two RCMP officers met him, one of them speaking in Spanish. He crossed over without any problems. One of us asked the taxi driver if he knew where he asylum seeker was from.
He said "He speaks Spanish and I think he's either from Palestine or Mexico". :)
Sunday, February 3rd 2019. Afternoon at Roxham Road, USA.
no one came today while we were there!
The border visit reports are written by the volunteers who were at the border on that day. There are about 15 active volunteers in our border visit committee.