An important public service announcement regarding police invasions of women’s shelters in canada, from the fine folks at No One Is Illegal Toronto:
OUT OF OUR SHELTERS! OUT OF OUR LIVES! was the message delivered
to the Canada Border Services Agency on March 8th, International Women’s
Day, by the 120 plus women and trans-folks who poured into the Toronto
Rape Crisis Centre for an Emergency Assembly.
The Assembly was called after it came to the attention of the Shelter |
Sanctuary | Status campaign that in Feb. 2010 an Immigration Enforcement
officer went into a women’s shelter, looking to deport a non-status migrant
woman, and survivor of violence. Since this information has been made public,
more and more women have started to break the silence.
The Assembly agreed to begin a large-scale campaign insisting that
Immigration Canada make women’s spaces and services OFF-LIMITS to
Immigration Enforcement. We are writing today to ask for your support. Please
read below, forward and act! Our actions can make immediate change.
The gathering of over a hundred women, with support from hundreds of others calls for:
1) IMMEDIATE ACTION
This FRIDAY, March 12:
Phone or Email Reg Williams, Director of Immigration Enforcement in Toronto
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, cc email@example.com
Insist that CBSA has no place in anti-violence against women organizations.
A sample of what you can say or write can be found at:
Forward this call to your friends, family and networks. The more
people/organizations that they hear from, the stronger our message will be!
2) If you are part of an organization that serves or supports migrant women,
transpeople and children, or work in a shelter or anti-violence against women
organization, invite a member of the SSS campaign to talk to you about
Access Without Fear. We can work with you to ensure that your centre is safe
and accessible for all people, regardless of immigration status.
3) Shelters and anti-VAW organizations across the city and across the country
are signing on to a declaration demanding:
-a moratorium on all deportations for women surviving violence
-Immigration Enforcement stay out of shelters and anti-VAW spaces
-women fighting back against violence be given immediate status
The full declaration is available here: http://toronto.nooneisillegal.org/node/432
If you are working in the anti-VAW sector, work with residents and
participants to get your organization to sign on to the declaration.
4) Get involved with the SSS campaign. On March 19, come out to the
SSS: Access Without Fear Forum for front-line workers and service providers
to develop strategies aimed at ensuring access to essential services for people
without full status. Register here: http://bit.ly/9y1Pvo
The Shelter|Sanctuary|Status Coalition is a growing movement of over 120
anti-Violence Against Women organizations that are working to create safe
spaces for all women, regardless of immigration status.