Fabulous news: The Canadian government has rescinded an order to deport the Maengs, a South Korean family who moved to Moncton, New Brunswick, eight and a half years ago. The Maengs moved to Canada in search of better treatment for their now 15-year-old son, Sung-Joo Maeng, who has epilepsy and autism.
According to the Huffington Post, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney has agreed to rescind the deportation order in the face of “growing public protest” on behalf of the Maengs:
The Maeng family’s story has attracted national attention because federal officials had said the family had to leave Canada by June 30 because providing health care and social services for 14-year-old Sung-Joo would put too much strain on the system.
On Wednesday, the New Brunswick government responded to growing public outrage by handing a private letter to the family confirming the province will pay for the boy’s health-care and social service costs.
The senior Citizenship and Immigration Canada source said the four-member family would be allowed to stay in Canada to continue the process of seeking permanent residency, but Kenney’s department couldn’t act until Thursday when it received New Brunswick’s commitment in writing.
The Maengs have owned and operated Moncton’s Main Stop Oriental Market on West Main Street in Moncton since 2003, when they came to Canada with temporary work visas. At that time, they “disclosed Sung-Joo’s health conditions to federal officials.” The Maengs also have another son, 19-year-old Jung-Joo, who also goes by the name John and has a student visa and is studying science at Dalhousie University in Halifax.
The family’s lawyer, Jack Haller, said that he and two other lawyers working on the case were “baffled by the federal government’s initial decision to deport the family, and the legal team was poised to seek an injunction to stop the process.” Sung-Joo’s neurologist had “said it would be unsafe for the boy to board a plane to Asia.” As Haller also stated, “The services are far superior here than anything he would receive in (South) Korea.”
At a news conference, John Maeng said:
“We were just so shocked. We were thrilled, and found a little more hope.”
THANK YOU to all who signed the petition to support the Maengs!