Pardon Services Canada calls on government to address pardons backlog

PARDON Services Canada is urging the Minister of Public Safety to step in and immediately provide the funding needed to clear the backlog of pardon applications at the Parole Board of Canada.

Some 5,800 Canadians are currently stuck in limbo, waiting for their pardon applications to be processed by the Parole Board with no indication on when decisions on these applications will be made. Applicants are now being told their file is dormant and they will have to submit a new application and pay an additional $631 to file.

Azmairnin Jadavji, President and CEO, Pardon Services Canada, said on Friday: “We have been struggling with this issue for many months now and it has only gotten worse. The fact that 5,800 Canadians are being told their pardon applications, which they already paid for, may not be processed is totally unacceptable.

“We feel this is simply a money grab on the part of the Parole Board. Our clients are trapped a catch-22 situation: either they wait indefinitely for their application to be processed or they have to pay more money.

“The people we assist are just ordinary Canadians working hard to put their past behind them and move on with their lives. We’re calling on the government to address this delay and provide the Parole Board with the funds needed to process these applications.”

Pardon Services Canada is an industry leader in the business of helping Canadians overcome the obstacles of a criminal record. Since 1989, PSC has successfully assisted over 100,000 Canadians exercise their lawful rights under the Criminal Records Act of Canada and the Immigration and Nationality Act of the United States.