Morrissey now runs Rainbow Refugee, an organization that helps people who are persecuted in their own country because of their sexual orientation gain asylum in Canada. But her work in this field started with a much more personal struggle.

When the couple left Chile in 1989, Morrissey returned to Canada and Coll, a dual U.S.-Irish citizen, entered Canada on a visitor visa. The two wanted to stay together permanently, but the law at the time only allowed married, heterosexual couples to sponsor a partner.

Sponsor a Partner or Conjugal Partner Canada

The pair launched a legal challenge under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, alleging discrimination on the basis of gender, family and sexual orientation because Morrissey was not able to sponsor a partner the same way a heterosexual person could.

“Miraculously … it was kind of a short route because they decided that even though Bridget had not met the (skilled worker) requirements previously, suddenly she did,” Morrissey explained, speculating the government wanted to avoid a court case.

In 2002, the government introduced new laws that allowed one common-law partner to sponsor another. Same-sex couples could use this avenue, which also opened the door to unmarried heterosexual couples for the first time. But it was of little use to many same-sex couples because they often don’t live together in their home countries due to fear of persecution, Morrissey said.

In response, the government created a third category called conjugal partners, which does not require the couple to live together.

Source: Activist crusades to open Canada’s doors to LGBTQ refugees

The following is the opinion of a Burnaby immigration consultant that has chosen to remain anonymous. It may or may not reflect the opinion(s) of RS Immigration Corporation. RS Immigration Corp provides assistance with Canadian immigration applications.

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The Canadian Charter of Rights and freedoms supports same sex couples and their ability to sponsor a partner under the conjugal partner and common law partner Canada class.

Same sex acts remain illegal in 76 other countries. In Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Sudan, same sex acts are punishable by death.

Do you have questions about sponsor a partner or conjugal partner Canada? Permanent Residence Canada spouseHow to apply sponsorship in Canada? Or other question? For assistance navigating your Canadian immigration application and increase your chances of success contact RS Immigration Corp (click here)


Carman, Tara. ‘Activist Crusades To Open Canada’S Doors To LGBTQ Refugees’. The Vancouver Sun. N.p., 2015. Web. 1 Aug. 2015.