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2013: No One Is Illegal - Toronto in Review

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The turning of the calendar gives us an opportunity to reflect on our struggles, and prepare for the work ahead. Here is a brief report of our activities.

2013 HIGHLIGHTS

Toronto Declared A Sanctuary CityToronto Declared A Sanctuary City

On February 21st, 2013, after over a decade of work involving organizations acrosss the city, No One Is Illegal – Toronto made a major breakthrough as Toronto was declared Canada’s first Sanctuary City. See a partial history of that struggle by clicking here. Check out a report by the Solidarity City Network on the next steps that Toronto must take.

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Canada’s largest immigration detainee strikeCanada’s largest immigration detainee strike

Since September 17, 2013, nearly 200 migrants have been on strike in Lindsay, ON. Though strike participants have faced deportation, segregation and violence, their actions have continued. Over 2,500 people have signed petitions, hundreds of us have protested, and the mainstream media has begun to question the unfairness of immigration detention. See the campaign website at www.endimmigrationdetention.com

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Canadian Immigration: Family Reunification for the Rich and the Lucky

No One Is Illegal – Toronto responds to the May 2013 changes to the Parent and Grandparent Program for Sponsorship

Last week, under the guise of “re-opening” family reunification, Immigration Minister Jason Kenney revealed significant changes to the Parent and Grandparent sponsorship program, once again making it harder for families to be reunited in Canada. With more exclusive conditions, only the wealthy or the lucky ones who make the first-come-first-served cut-off will be reunited with families, leaving behind the thousands who have been waiting for the past 10 years.

In 2011, Minister Kenney imposed a two-year freeze on immigration applications from parents and grandparents, shutting out the 165,000 people who had applied under the program many of whom had been waiting over eight years. Under the new restrictions, most of these families will remain shut out.

Canada's new immigration paradigm: Detention, Deportation and Abuse

On December 15, the Refugee Exclusion Act (Bill C-31, formally the "Protecting Canada's Immigration System Act") will be fully implemented.

Please watch, and share this video, of past and current immigration detainees and No One Is Illegal - Toronto organizers explaining the impacts of these new laws. Filmed by Liberation Cooperative Organization outside the Toronto Immigration Holding Centre.

WATCH & SHARE
https://vimeo.com/55622758

Among other things, these laws will mean even more immigrants will end up in in immigration detention.

Did you know that there have been nearly 95,000 immigrants that have spent time in detention in Canada since 2004? and that immigration detention is $50 + million business with private companies managing and operating immigration detention centres?

KEY FACTS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT DETENTION
http://toronto.nooneisillegal.org/ImmigrationDetention2012
Includes a flyer you can print and distribute

AND LEARN MORE ABOUT SECURITY CERTIFICATES
www.supportmahjoub.org & www.justiceforjaballah.org

As of December 15, 2012, our communities face:

* Mandatory detention: Many refugees deemed "irregular arrivals" or "smuggled", including children over the age of 16, will face mandatory detention upon arrival. Migrants will become one of the largest growing prison populations with Harper's prison expansion plan.

No One Is Illegal - Toronto statement on Detentions & Security Designations

** Total persons detained since Harper came to power: Over 72,000
** Total persons detained (2010-2011): 8,838
** Percentage of persons detained in prisons: 35 percent (FY 2010-2011)
** Max. length of detention: Unlimited
** Average length of detention: 25 days (FY 2010-2011)
(Global Detention Project)

No One Is Illegal (NOII) Toronto has a long history of organizing against immigrant detentions, and in the course of this work supporting struggles for prisoner rights and for prison abolition. Today, on the one year anniversary of the 'G20 Main Conspiracy Group' plea deal that saw six of our comrades locked up while 11 were let go, we are joining with DAMN 2025 to speak out in support of our ally and friend Mandy Hiscocks’s application at the human rights tribunal in Ontario.

DEADLINE EXTENDED: Fill out the NOII-Toronto Supporters Survey!

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DEADLINE EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 8, 2012

We are looking for feedback. Please take a few minutes to let us know what you think of our organizing work and methods and the ways in which we communicate with you. It will only take ten minutes and we are excited about knowing what our supporters' think.

http://goo.gl/RZqli

Also, when you fill out the survey you get entered in to a draw to win an exciting collection of NOII stuff including:

+ choice of noii t-shirt (various sizes)
+ copy of 'migrant justice political graphics' by ryan hayes
+ noii logo stickers to make your water bottle/laptop/guitar case just that bit cooler
+ noii red and black balloons for that perfect touch to any occassion

Kenney gala disrupted, communities honoured, relationships strengthened

Pictures & Videos at: http://honouringourcommunities.tumblr.com/ (check often!)
Take a picture of yourself and a sign striving for social justice and upload it here too!

Over 400 protestors took to the streets of Toronto Sunday night gathering outside Toronto's Royal York Hotel. Inside, Israel's apartheid institution Haifa University supported by Stephen Harper, Peter Munk, Ezra Levant and others had organized a ceremony to give Immigration Minister Jason Kenney an honorary degree.

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