News/Canada: Strip visas abused: MP

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Subject: News/Canada: Strip visas abused: MP
From: Melanie Orhant (morhant@igc.org)
Date: Tue Jun 27 2000 - 09:07:36 EDT


Strip visas abused: MP
By Tom Godfrey
Toronto Sun, April 19, 2000

An immigration program that allows foreign strippers to come here to dance
is rife with abuse and should be shut down, says the Canadian Alliance.

Toronto Police have arrested more than 100 foreign dancers in Project
Almonzo, an undercover probe that targets sex in strip clubs.

Cops say women arrive on work permits arranged by mobsters in eastern
Europe and South America. Many go underground after the permits, which last
six months to a year, expire.

Officers said no one checks up on the women once they get here.

"I don't think this program is beneficial to the people of Canada," said MP
Leon Benoit, the Alliance's immigration critic. "The program is a mess and
rife with abuse. (It) should be shut down."

Hundreds of foreign strippers have been allowed in after a federal study
concluded there weren't enough peelers.

Immigration spokesman Rene Mercier said his department allows people to
come here to fill legitimate jobs.

Melanie Orhant <<morhant@igc.org>>
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