In his statement, Blair said the deal with the US „remains a complete vehicle” for maintaining a compassionate, fair and orderly refugee protection system, based on the principle that people should seek asylum in the first safe country they arrive in. The government said repealing the agreement would result in an „influx” of asylum seekers at the border, making it more difficult for different levels of government to maintain the existing refugee system, including the provision of housing and other social services. The Safe Third Country Agreement applies to refugee claimants who wish to enter Canada or the United States at land border crossings between Canada and the United States (including railways). It also applies at airports when a person seeking refugee protection in country B has been classified as a non-refugee in country A and is in transit through country A as part of his or her removal. The agreement helps both governments better manage access to the refugee system in each country for people crossing the U.S.-country border. The two countries signed the agreement on 5 December 2002 and entered into force on 29 December 2004. The Agreement does not apply to U.S. citizens or ordinary residents of the United States who are not nationals of a country („stateless”). McDonald gave the government until the end of January to prepare for the end of the deal because it realized it was in the public interest not to immediately denounce the deal. Julie Taub, a lawyer in charge of immigration and refugees, says the Canada Border Services Agency has lost its capacity since the agreement was put in place in late 2004 and would be „overwhelmed” if the agreement were repealed.  Individuals identified because of a serious criminal history cannot seek refugee protection, regardless of how they enter the country. The agreement obliges refugee claimants to seek refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in, unless they are entitled to a derogation from the agreement. The Canadian Council for Refugees strongly opposes the agreement because the United States is not a safe country for all refugees.
The CCR also condemns the objective and impact of reducing the number of refugees who may seek refuge in Canada. Under the Safe Third Country Agreement, in force since December 2004, Canada and the United States declare that the other country is safe for refugees and close the door to most refugees at the U.S.-Canada border. Federal Judge Ann Marie McDonald ruled that the agreement violated a section of the Canadian Charter of Rights that states that laws or acts of state that affect liberty and security must respect the principles of fundamental justice. Amid this and other very public anxiety, an August 2018 Angus Reid poll showed that two-thirds of Canadians thought the arrival of asylum seekers in Canada was a „crisis.” Storm Alliance and La Meute, two far-right nationalist groups in Quebec, argued that the situation constituted an „invasion” of Quebec by „illegals” and regularly held demonstrations on Roxham Road with the Patriote sovereignist flag. . . .