In 2021–22, the IRB plans to finalize the implementation of recommendations from the review of the Chairperson’s
Guideline 9: Proceedings Before the IRB Involving Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE Guideline). The objective is to ensure SOGIE-diverse individuals appearing before the Board continue to receive consistently sensitive treatment and a fair hearing, and that decisions are of high quality. Following an update to the Guideline to ensure it remains current, along with the implementation of additional safeguards to ensure maximization of natural justice principles, enhanced training will be provided to IRB members and employees, and designated representatives and interpreters.
A review of the
Chairperson’s Guideline 4:
Women Refugee Claimants Fearing Gender-Related Persecution, which began in 2020–21, will continue in 2021–22 with the development of revised guidance applicable to all four Divisions. This will support the adjudication of cases involving gender-related issues. Enhanced training on gender-based violence and trauma-informed adjudication will also be provided.
In addition, the Board will undertake a review of the
Chairperson’s Guideline 1 - Civilian Non-Combatants Fearing Persecution and the
Chairperson’s Guideline 3 - Child Refugee Claimants. The IRB will continue to review its Designated Representatives (DR) Program. This Program aims to provide unaccompanied minors and those who are unable to appreciate the nature of the proceedings at the IRB with competent DRs who adequately represent them.
The Immigration Appeal Division will finalize the review of its Rules of Practice and continue its focus on early resolution and hearing preparedness to ensure that hearing time is used to maximum effect. One objective is to ensure more easily accessible Rules, which aims to assist appellants, including those who are unrepresented, with better access to justice. GBA+ has been incorporated into the Treasury Board Secretariat’s Triage Statement and will continue informing this work.