Security Clearance Denial

Dual Citizenship-Ties with Canada Results in Clearance Denial

Along the same lines as another article recently posted, a decision was made in a recent Defense Office Hearing and Appeals (DOHA) to deny eligibility for a security clearance to a Department of Defense (DoD) contractor based on foreign influence and foreign preference concerns resulting from the applicant’s ties to Canada.

You are asking yourself right now: What threat is someone who has dual citizenship with Canada? Are we really that concerned about the Canadians disclosing classified information?

Despite the fact that the U.S. has close ties with our northern neighbors, they are members of NATO, and we share many political, free trade, and human rights policies, Canada is also targeted by other foreign intelligence agencies and terrorist groups to obtain information which could be used against the U.S. This particular individual has dual citizenship with Canada, numerous immediate family members who are Canadian Citizens, was given subsidies to attend university there, currently lives there with his domestic partner, has a Canadian bank account, paid taxes, received health care benefits, voted in elections, participates in a government pension plan, and has a Canadian passport driver’s license.

Absence from America doesn’t make the cleared heart grow fonder

The adjudicative guidelines are very clear on disqualifying factors regarding foreign influence and foreign preference, and this individual pretty much checked all the blocks. He offered very little in the way of providing any conditions that would mitigate the concerns and focused only on the contention that he was honest and trustworthy and had an outstanding work history with his company.

Comparatively speaking, when analyzing this case versus others with foreign influence/preference concerns, it was quite easy for the judge to make the determination that it was not in the best interests of national security to grant him eligibility for a security clearance.