Last week, I wrote about how Canadian Ellen Richardson, who suffers from bouts of depression, was barred from entering the U.S. One of the outstanding question raised about that story was how U.S. customs agents were accessing Canadians’ suicide attempts and hospitalization records. A senior official for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency told me that they only have access to criminal and police databases, from a mutual sharing arrangement with Canada.
Well, it appears the Canadian RCMP are the ones to blame. Because for years now, the RCMP has been putting information about Canadians who attempt or even just threaten suicide into a national law enforcement database called the CPIC. Which is then shared with U.S. customs and law enforcement agencies.
Why would the RCMP want to keep track of those who threaten suicide in a law enforcement database? Is this just another example of the police discriminating against people with mental illness?