The Safe Third Country Agreement (S.T.C.A) is an agreement between the U.S. and Canada that prohibits most immigrants who arrive in the U.S. first from making an asylum claim at the border of Canada (and vice versa).
Initially, the agreement was reached based on the idea that both the U.S. and Canada are equally safe countries for immigrants looking to start a new life. It was put in place in part to prevent “asylum shopping” - or “shopping around” at one country before deciding to go to the other. However, now there are legal challenges to the agreement questioning whether the United States truly is a safe place for immigrants.
The mounting evidence makes it clear that the United States government is not capable, or has chosen not to, take seriously the safety of it’s asylum seekers - and that Canada should be able to grant asylum to immigrants who land in the U.S. before making their way up north. It’s a sad reality to face, and we must do better. Read the full story at www.newyorker.com.