Whence They Came
Deportation from Canada 1900 - 1935
Publication Year: 1988
Published by: University of Ottawa Press
Canada is a peculiar nation. Peopled by immigrants, it is a country, paradoxically, which hates immigration. Every single public opinion survey over the past fifty years indicates that most Canadians - including by the way, most immigrants themselves - do not want any substantial increase in the number of people admitted to this country. This attitude may surprise Canadians, but historically it should not.
1 The Functions of Deportation
This book is a study of deportation of immigrants from Canada to the countries whence they had come, between 1900 and 1935. The first chapter considers the part that deportation played in managing the labour supply and maintaining the social order. The next chapter provides an overview of the legal framework for deportation, looking also at factors that influenced the timing and specific provisions of the pertinent sections of the legislation.
2 The Law and Deportation
The legal bases for the actions of the Department of Immigration were the Immigration Acts and amendments passed by Parliament, supplemented by various Orders-in-Council. Departmental policies, regulations, and practice were mandated to conform to the decisions of Parliament which, with Cabinet, was responsible for determining and overseeing the Department's activities; such was the continuing judgement of law courts.
3 Incidence and Patterns of Deportation
The obvious place to look for information about the extent and causes of deportation is in the published annual reports of the Department of Immigration (under its various names over the years). Each annual report gives the number of people deported, and the causes for which they were deported. Yet these seemingly straightforward statistics are at best misleading, and at times deliberately deceptive.
4 Developing the System, 1890s-1920
Deportation practices of Immigration officials between the early 1890s and the early 1920s can be readily seen to fall into three fairly distinct periods: 1890s-1906; 1906-1914; 1914-1920. During the first period, the Department was deporting so informally and unofficially (and extra-legally) that little can be known beyond the bare outlines of the practices of the time. Some trends are nonetheless clear.
5 The Alien Bolshevik Menace, 1910-1920s
The Canadian Department of Immigration moved into a new phase of deportation work in the latter stage of the First World War, with the deliberate and systematic deportation of agitators, activists and radicals. Some of these were people who had not done anything illegal, but who were considered undesirable on the basis of their political beliefs and activities. The threat they posed was not to the people of Canada, but to the vested interests such as ...
6 The Bureaucracy Matures, 1920s-1935
Throughout the 1920s deportation case-building and record-keeping increased in importance. Before the 1920s, the Department's emphasis on constructing solid cases was usually based on its desire to make the transportation companies pay the cost of deportation, and to avoid grave criticism or public uproar for shipping out paupers or the helpless. By the 1920s, it had begun to build legal cases that would demonstrate the fairness and completeness of its work.
7 Troublemakers and Communists, 1930-1935
Deportation of radicals in the 1930s was made to order by political fiat. It was a logical extension of earlier deportations of similar troublemakers. The techniques used for the political deportations of the 1930s were similar to those developed during the period of the First World War. In both instances, political deportation was made easier by special legal powers to deport radicals overtly for political ...
8 "Shovelling Out" the Redundant, 1930-1935
The deportation of the unemployed in the 1930s continued well established practice, but at the same time intensified to such a degree that it became a change in kind. The tradition of expelling immigrants who had become public charges had been established some fifty years earlier. The unemployed who had gone on relief were the main target group for the Department of Immigration during the Depression. Just as unemployment became a mass phenomenon, the ...
9 "Purely Administrative Proceedings"
The Department of Immigration was arbitrary in the management of deportation. Curbs on this arbitrariness were few and ineffective. As J. F. Hodgetts points out, "There is a paradox in the fact that the administrative branch of the government is by far the largest of our public and private institutions and yet, even to the informed members of the general public, it is the least visible."1
APPENDIX: Ministers Responsible for Immigration, 1867-1936
Page Count: 264
Publication Year: 1988
OCLC Number: 181843508
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