October 2, 2008
Ryerson University Student Centre
55 Gould St. - Rm SCC115
Zahra Dhanani, Legal Director - METRAC
Valeska Gomez-Castillo, Counselor - Nellie's
Jackie Esmonde, Lawyer - Falconer Charney Barristers
Ana Cisneros, Coordinator of the Latin American Women's Program - TRCC
* Learn about how recent changes to immigration law impact diverse women, including women without status
* Hear about attacks on safe spaces and community responses to support non-status women fleeing violence
* Presentation on a draft Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy for shelters and service providers.
* Q&A with immigration lawyer, front line workers and service providers
MARCH and RALLY at the Immigration and Refugee Board
October 2, 2008
Meet at Yonge and Gould
Let Them Stay!
* Support domestic violence survivor Isabel Garcia and her children to stay in Canada
* Call for the refugee determination process to protect women fleeing violence.
Isabel Garcia, single mother and survivor of domestic violence, and her children are just one of many families whose lives have been put at risk as a result of negative decisions at the Immigration and Refugee Board.
Isabel came to Canada with her children 3 years ago seeking protection from her violent ex-husband in Mexico. Ignoring overwhelming evidence pointing to a lack of state protection for women surviving domestic violence in Mexico, the Immigration and Refugee Board heartlessly denied Isabel's claim for asylum.
By issuing an abrupt and last minute deportation notice, Immigration Enforcement ensured that Isabel and her lawyer did not have time for a fair review at the Federal Court for a stay on her removal. Isabel made the difficult decision to go into hiding rather than face further violence in Mexico.
Canada's failing Immigration and Refugee Protection Act is allowing huge numbers of women fleeing violence to fall through the cracks. The Federal Court of Canada has begun to question decisions of the Refugee Board and
has recently overturned several decisions where women faced gender violence.
These women have been unable to access shelters, crisis centers, professional support, guidance or counseling because of Immigration Enforcement's targeting of these spaces.
Stand up against immigration decisions and policies that put women and children, like Isabel and her family, at risk of violence. Join us as we call on the government to:
* Let Them Stay! - Allow this family to stay in Canada while their Humanitarian Application is considered, and to grant their Humanitarian Application
* Ensure protection for women fleeing violence through the refugee determination process
** How can you help? **
1) Endorse the rally and help us mobilize. Organize a delegation from your church, union, or community center to come out to the forum and rally. Call us for help in spreading the word and for copies of flyers and posters or to make a financial or in-kind donation. For posters and flyers, visit No one is illegal
2) Write a support letter for Isabel Garcia and mail it to the Workers Action Centre. For a sample, see letter here
3) Invite campaign representatives to do a workshop or presentation at your organization, agency or community centre.
4) Make a financial or in-kind donation to help with this campaign. Cheques can be made payable to Workers Action Centre.
5)Come out to a banner making session at Parkdale Community Legal Services (1266 Queen St W), on Tues. Sept 30. Drop in anytime between 1pm-7pm.
For more information, or to send an endorsement or a letter of support, contact:
Workers' Action Centre - Sonia Singh: firstname.lastname@example.org
Interim Place - Cindy Cowan: email@example.com
No One is Illegal: firstname.lastname@example.org
Donations and support letters can be sent to:
Workers' Action Centre
720 Spadina Avenue, Suite 223
Toronto ON M5S 2T9