Professor Vasanthi Venkatesh says a ruling made by the Federal Court of Canada last week will make it easier for those looking to apply for refugee status at Canadian borders.
"It's a momentous decision," Professor Venkatesh told CBC's Windsor Morning on Friday, adding that advocates have pushed for this for a long time.
The Federal Court of Canada ruled to strike down the Safe Third Country Agreement: a plan that has been in place since 2004 and has meant that refugees arriving in the United States and who present themselves at the border looking to make a claim in Canada are denied, with few exceptions.
While it seems unusual that somebody who wants to be in Canada would initially land in the U.S., Professor Venkatesh said it happens because it's "difficult" to come to Canada.
"I mean we are geographically isolated with just one land border with the United States and it's very difficult to get a visa into Canada for those who can make it to Canada," said Professor Venkatesh.
Last week's Federal Court of Canada's ruling recognizes that sending those refugee claimants back to the U.S. violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The federal government has six months to respond to the ruling.