In January 2014, Mexican journalist Karla Lottini revealed that an immigrant named Lucia Vega Jiménez had committed suicide while in the custody of Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA).
Almost immediately after, a number of Vancouver journalists began filing freedom of information requests for documents related to CBSA’s handling of Jiménez’s apprehension and subsequent death.
Federal legislating states that requests filed under the Access to Information Act should be answered within 30 days. Yet CBSA did not release one page related to the Jiménez case until more than nine months after journalists’ filed their requests.
Some media outlets received and reported on the package of documents on Monday (November 10) while, interestingly, others are still waiting for them.
Since this FOI request is now completed, anybody should be able to obtain a copy of the response package by contacting the CBSA access to information and privacy office.
The FOI file number and a description of the request should be published on this CBSA website, but it appears CBSA is not keeping that archive up to date (the last entry is from September).
Furthermore, based on numerous past dealings with CBSA, it is my understanding that CBSA will not simply email or mail someone a copy of a completed FOI response package when it is requested.
CBSA argues that they require 30 days to process such a request, despite the package already being compiled and ready for public distribution.
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