In January 2014, 46 claims for refugee status were filed in Quebec, Canada. In January 2017, that number had swelled almost 10 times to 452. Three of those new applicants were given a face via a viral video on social media which showed members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police helping the family over the border.
In the video, the family can be seen crossing the Canadian-American border with their three-year-old daughter in a stroller – an “illegal” crossing in freezing temperatures of -15 degree Celsius.
But what was lost in the outpouring of warm messages that followed on social media was that the family would be detained for two days.
Confirming this, an officer of the force told Global News: “Basically we want to see if all they did is cross the border, we need to make sure there were no criminal code offences.” The officer also stated that once “no red flags are raised” the Canadian Border Services Agency can begin the immigration process.