Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - April 1, 1970, Lethbridge, Alberta
April 1, 1970 THE UTHMKCI HfKAlD 39 Handles 40 Immigrants Daily Counselling Office For U.S. Draft Dodgers Is Going Concern Bj HUNK GEAY TORONTO (CP) Br rmr'mfiTtmin'i standards, the Torotto Anti-Dnft Program is sping concern. Under directors William Spin, a business- man, and Bernard Jilfe, a 24-yeaf-old draH dodger from New York, the program is coutfeiliag nearly 40 young American immigrants a day. This is nearly triple the vol- ume of persons counselled vheB the organization was first started as the Student Union for Peace Action more than three years ago. Because of the heavy de- mand put on its facilities, the program moved from its crowded two-room office to an equally crowded five-room basement headquarters nearby in the city's north end. It DOW employs five full- time workers at a week, its Manual for Dttft- Age Immigrants is in its fourth edition with cop- ies in print, and assistance iron Canadian church groups is on the increase. DESERTERS INCREASE Director Spira said that with ihe mounting influx has come a shift in the ratio of draft dodgers to military de- serters. "Now, almost two of every 'three young men coming to us from the United Slate is a deserter; it used to be the other way he said hi hand, we know the desertion rate is increasing...." One thing U certain: the Vietnam war has had a dras- tic effect on the migration of people between the two couo- tries. Canadian immigration de- partment figures for the year1 ending June 30 show that in 1965, Canadians emi- ilcd to the U.S. This figure decreased steadily to a total of in .IMS. FLOW REVERSES Conversely, figures for the calendar year showed 1964 immigration to Canada from the U.S. at By the end of 1W H had risen to Doubts have persisted about the vulnerability of young Americas immigrants in Can- ada to U.S. authorities la a 1968 speech in Calgary, Frank Kossa, a secretary in the U.S. selective service sys- tem, declared that the RCMP and FBI were co-operating to expose organuaUoni aiding draft dodgers. The U.S. consulate here de- nied knowledge of such a part, and the RCMP noted: "There has been no change in our policy towards draft dodgers. If they behave a re- sponsible immigrants, there are no problems. "We do visit those persons, however, whereabouts has beep sought by the FBI. But this is only to determine their status as immigrants and if, in fact, they are in Canada." Mr. Spira said the Toronto program has not been both- ered by the police. He feK that any doubts about Can- ada's policy regarding draft dodgers and deserters was clarified May 22, 1969, when Allan minister of manpower and immigration, told the House of Commons: "An individual's status with regard to compulsory military service in his own country has no bearing upon his admissa- bility to Canada either as an immigrant or as a visitor; nor is he subject to removal from Canada because of unfulfilled military obligations in his country of citizenship." Mr. MacEachen noitO the Visiting Forces Act, however, which says that persons who desert foreign forces while such forces are visiting Can- ada will be subject to arrest and return to Ifceir command. Alaj Borovoy, dirlclor of the Canadian Civil Liberties Union, called for a reaffirmi- tion of Canadian policy from the immigration department so that minor officials who deal directly with American "would be less in- clined to assert their own prejudices." "One reason, I think, is' that the methods of avoiding the draft without leaving the U.S. have become more refined. A simpie change of address or an appeal of the draft classifi- cation really -stows the whole drafting Mr. Spira, a native-born Austrian who emigrated to the tl-S. in 1938 and moved to Canada ra the early 1950s, noted a few of the differences draft dodgers and de- serters. "The dilfeieuee, between the two is that the draft dodger usually encounters the anti- war movement in college; the deserter fe often a married man and, lacking that kind of educational background, doecnt encounter this senti- ment until he is in the army. "I you might say then that the army is our biggest he said. NOT ALL OPPOSED "Mart; of the deurters I've talked to not only object to the war in Vietnam, bat to the of young people in tte those who sim- ply go along with the military game because it's what they're brought up with." But Mr. Spira conceded that not all the young immigrants support such iffffWH as getting out of Vietnam, civil rights and control. "A little more than a year ago, we got one pair here wearing George Wallace but- tons. Their reason for desert- ing was 'Why should I get my- self killed for an administra- tion fun of tiwy should use the bomb and get tht war over with.' But we don't get too many of 'those." Relatively few Negroes ap- pear at the anti-draft pro- gram's office, he said. "I'm not sane why this is except that most blacks who desert or dodge the draft probably hide in the big city ghettos. They don't have to lave the country to find a safe refuge." TOTAL NOT KNOWN How many such immigrants are in Canada? He could only estimate the number it between and The U.S. consulate here says H has no official records either, but uses a fig- ure ranging between and And organizations such as the New York-based Clergy and Laymen Con- cerned About Vietnam put the number at anywhere between and A U.S. consulate official here said: "We wed to get four or five persons a day coming in here asking what would happen to them if they went back home. We tok) them that they would be inducted immediately and charfes for breaking the law would be laid against them. A few took our advice and tetuiwu. "But now few ever come in any more. On the other UPTONS CREAM Of MUSHROOM McGavin'. Walnut Madeira Nestles Quik Cereal f p I LOT rOOfl IQHIB Son tin Dr. Balord, 3 var. A IS-oi. tini Z for With body S-oz. It.! 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