News: Anti-Gay Evangelist appointed to Immigration Board

Doug Cryer, former director of public policy for the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada, has been appointed to the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB).

Cryer's appointment has many people worried because of statements that he made publicly in 2006 on CanadianChristianity.com, where he said that the church has a right to say that homosexual behaviour is sinful, just as it can say that adultery is sinful. "It is part of God's teaching," he said, though he was also critical of a church that mass-mailed a homophobic pamphlet which included an article titled The Plague of this 21st Century: The Consequences of the Sin of Homosexuality (AIDS). "This kind of brochure helps to reinforce the negative stereotype of Christians," Cryer said at the time.

During his time at the Evangelical Fellowship, Cryer actively campaigned against same-sex marriage, arguing that it could have a "negative impact on children."...

(When) NDP immigration critic Olivia Chow submitted Access to Information (ATI) requests for the selection criteria, she was given pages of blacked-out notes that were unusable.

"He does not have any in-depth experience on any immigration and refugee issues," Chow says. "From his CV, he has no experience serving on the tribunal or connected with administrating the law, so I can't see how he would qualify to be an Immigration and Refugee Board member." Chow also suggests that Cryer's appointment is likely because he was a failed Conservative candidate, having run in the 2004 general election as the candidate for Wascana in Saskatchewan, and that he previously served as the legislative assistant to a Conservative MP.