Deportation pending

Chinese single mom has had 12 marriage proposals

Mon, May 14, 2007


Chinese single mom Hong Zhang and her daughter Sherry have been ordered to report on Wednesday to border officials to make removal arrangements to leave Canada, their counsel says.

Tomorrow, Zhang, 39, will travel to the Chinese consulate, on St. George St., to apply for a visitors visa so Canadian-born Sherry can enter China, said Roy Kellogg, her immigration consultant.

"She is scared to go inside the consulate to get a visa," Kellogg said yesterday. "She has made a refugee claim against China."

The pending deportation has outraged people across the country who've written letters and phoned the Toronto Sun to try and adopt 1-year-old Sherry.

Kellogg said 12 men have proposed marriage to Zhang to sponsor her to remain in Canada.

Zhang had unsuccessfully tried to place Sherry with children's aid officials hoping one day the girl will be able to sponsor her back to Canada.

Kellogg said Zhang has to report to a Canada Border Services Agency removals unit, on Airport Rd., in two days to finalize plans to leave the country.

"Normally at these meetings they set a date for her to leave," Kellogg said. "But first she has to show that she applied for a visa for Sherry."

Kellogg said it can take more than 20 years for Zhang to be sponsored back to Canada by Sherry, who must first reach age 18.

He said the child will be treated as a second-class citizen if sent to China, where laws ban children out of wedlock. He said Sherry will be stigmatized and will not get health coverage, be allowed to attend school or to obtain Chinese citizenship.

As a single mom, Zhang also faces a fine of $140,000 a child for returning to China with children, Kellogg said.

Zhang came to Canada in 1997 and filed an unsuccessful refugee claim and appeals.

Kellogg said he represents five Chinese moms in Zhang's situation. He said most made failed refugee claims on arrival in Canada and then filed appeals, during which time they become pregnant.