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Q & A:Employment Authorization: Difficulty at Port of Entry

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Q. I am an American-Chinese, was traveling with a white salesman to make a service call at a large computer company in Toronto. At the airport, customs/immigration asked us the same questions, I was sent for further questioning, but the salesman was sent through.

The immigration official said they were worried about giving out too many work visas, of which I had no interest.

Does Canada have a problem with non-whites in this regard?

Answer: The reality is that such encounters happen with white applicants for employment authorization, as well as non-whites, in many cases where the application is not clearly presented or documented at the time of arrival at a port of entry.

We have been contacted by candidates of all race who have encountered difficulties due to false assumptions about their eligibility to enter Canada for employment related purposes.

[Comment: As there is a degree of discretion available to immigration officials at a port of entry for all non-immigrant visas, the rules that govern admission as such cannot be applied with absolute consistency. For this reason, it is especially important that all applicants for non-immigrant visa at a port of entry be in possession of the appropriate documentation and information for the visa being sought.]

Additional information on this topic may be found at Campbell, Cohen’s web site at the following URL: