Canada’s opposition Conservative Party has voted at its convention to end citizenship by birthplace if neither of the child’s parents holds Canadian citizenship or permanent residency, in the face of a booming Chinese birth tourism industry in British Columbia.
The non-binding policy resolution was supported by delegates including Alice Siu-Ping Chan Wong, the MP for Richmond Centre in BC. Richmond is at the centre of the practice of birth tourism, driven by mainland Chinese parents.
Vancouver Coastal Health, which runs nine hospitals in British Columbia, does not record the nationality of foreign mothers. But it says the “overwhelming majority” of non-resident mothers list mainland China as their billing address, and the vast majority of such births occur at its hospital in Richmond, the most ethnically-Chinese city in the world outside Asia.
In 2016, the BC Ministry of Health’s audit branch identified 26 “baby houses” – tourism operators accommodating pregnant Chinese women intending to give birth in Canada. Many openly advertise their services – which are completely legal. They typically provide pregnant Chinese women with accommodation and prenatal care, then help apply for passports for the newborns.
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