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Fighting to change Canada's 'Draconian' immigration system

Posted in

Recent protest held at Christie Pits Park aims to stop amendments to Bill C-50

BY LIAM LAHEY
May 8, 2008 12:14 PM

Stories of unpaid wages, low pay, fear and intimidation and threats of detention and deportation are all too common for temporary foreign workers and workers without status in Canada, said Faria Kamal, spokesperson for No One is Illegal-Toronto.

On May 3, the community-based organization aimed to raise awareness of the plight of immigrant workers and of the proposed amendments to the Immigration and Protection Act Bill C-50 by way of the National Day of Action for Status held at Christie Pits Park. The protest was held in concert with similar events occurring in other Canadian cities. Marchers also congregated in Toronto's Parkdale neighbourhood, joining those at Christie Pits for the rally.

Xinhua China Daily: Rallies in Canada protest deportation of illegal workers

Posted in

(Xinhua)
Updated: 2006-05-28

Thousands of immigrants, refugees and their supporters gathered Saturday in several of Canada's big cities to protest the deportation of illegal workers.

In the biggest city of Toronto, where illegal workers amount to 80,000, about 1,000 protesters went to the streets, including several parliament members of opposition parties.

Protests were also held in Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal and Fredericton to demand the federal government immediately grant permanent resident or landed immigrant status to all illegal workers, estimated at 500,000 across the country.

The marchers complained about Canadian Border Services Agency officers of targeting non-status workers in shopping malls and subways, and using children as bait to nab parents.

Canada's Conservative government took on a tough stance on illegal immigrants, having deported plane loads of undocumented workers since April.

CP: Immigrants take to streets to protest deportation of non-status workers

Posted in

Canadian Press
Saturday, May 27, 2006

TORONTO (CP) - Hundreds of immigrants, refugees and their supporters demonstrated in Toronto Saturday against the deportation of illegal workers.

Protesters are calling on the federal government to immediately grant permanent resident or landed immigrant status to all illegal workers.

Marchers in Toronto accused Canada Border Services Agency officers of targeting non-status workers in shopping malls and subways, and using children as bait to nab parents.

New Democrat Toronto MP Olivia Chow says she expects a motion asking the government to temporarily halt deportations will pass at the committee level and come before the House of Commons this coming week.

Organizers say the number of Canada's undocumented workers has been estimated at 500,000.

Demonstrations were also held in other Canadian cities including Vancouver, Ottawa and Montreal.

CTV: Rallies protest deportation of illegal workers

Posted in

Updated Sat. May. 27 2006 11:46 PM ET
CTV.ca News Staff

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20060527/immigration...

Immigrants, refugees and their supporters gathered in Toronto and other cities to protest the deportation of illegal workers.

Protesters in Toronto on Saturday called on the federal government to give immediate permanent residence or landed immigrant status to all illegal workers.

They complained about Canadian Border Services Agency officers of targeting non-status workers in shopping malls and subways.

Protesters also brought up the one case where officers nabbed two children in school as "bait" for the children.

In Toronto, the increased enforcement has particularly affected Portuguese workers who have overstayed temporary work permits.

The Star: School Board endorses `don't ask, don't tell'

May 26, 2006
NICHOLAS KEUNG - The Toronto Star

Canada's largest school board has adopted, in principle, a "don't ask, don't tell" policy when it comes to dealing with students who may not have legal status in the country.

Toronto District School Board trustees voted unanimously this week to designate staff to work with city council, the police board and social agencies to come up with a common protocol — one that would ensure non-status migrants and their children aren't turned away from services and pushed further underground out of fear.

"We need to show some courage and leadership, that we are not allowing our kids to be used as pawns," said Trustee Josh Matlow (Ward 11, St. Paul's), to the applause of more than two dozen supporters of the motion.

CBC: Immigration Officials Will Not Be Allowed To Question Students: Board

May 26, 2006 - cbc.ca

Toronto's 550 public schools will not allow federal officials to question their students about the immigration status of their families, effective in September.

The Toronto District School Board's new policy, passed at a meeting Wednesday night, comes in the wake of a widely criticized incident at a Toronto Catholic high school, where federal officials pulled students out of class to track down parents staying in Canada illegally.

In the new school year, federal officials will have to meet with the school board director if they have questions about possible illegal immigrants.

Trustee Josh Matlow said the school board, which oversees administration for about 450 elementary schools and 100 secondary schools, decided it had to act quickly to send a message to the federal government about the approach of its immigration officials.

The Toronto Catholic District School Board adopted a similar policy recently.

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