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Samba Protest at Toronto Immigration Jail Against Deaths in Custody, Immigration Raids

November 20, 2014

Toronto, ON - Friends, families and supporters of immigration detainees will be gathering at the Toronto Immigration Holding Centre (TIHC) calling for an overhaul of immigration arrest and detention practices. In August, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) racially profiled migrants on their way to work, and coerced them into signing away their rights. A recent Global News report named eleven people who have died in suspicious circumstances in immigration detention in Canada since 2000.

WHAT: Rally and music at TIHC Prison Facility detainees-re-start-hunger-fast-hundreds-rally-outside-lindsay-jail/

WHEN: 3:30pm, Sunday, November 23rd, 2014. Media Briefing also at 2:35pm in Toronto.

WHERE: Toronto Immigration Holding Centre, 385 Rexdale Boulevard (3pm) and Christie Pits Park, Toronto (2:30pm)

VISUALS: Supporters holding placards and banners. Singing accompanied by samba band.
Former detainees and supporter delivering messages.

Media Briefings at Christie Pits, Bloor St, Toronto at 2:30pm and at Toronto Immigration Holding Centre, 385 Rexdale Boulevard at 4:00pm, Nov 23rd.


On August 14th, CBSA with the support of Ontario Provincial Police, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation and the Ontario Ministry of Environment racially profiled and detained 21 undocumented migrants on their way to work. The Ministry of Transportation cut ties with CBSA after overwhelming public pressure, and an Ontario Ombudsman investigation is still pending. However, the CBSA is yet to come clean on its role.

On November 5th, a Global News report -– Canada’s Unwanted: Non-citizens paid to leave, jailed without charge, die in secret. eave-jailed-without-charge-die-in-secret/ -- revealed that 11 people have died in immigration detention facilities since 2000, 7 of them in Ontario. Recent controversies surrounding Ontario’s involvement in immigration enforcement have lead to calls for the province to take a stand and refuse to hold people in indefinite maximum security detention.

Since September 2013, over 100 migrants held in a maximum-security prison in Lindsay, ON have been on a protest strike against endless detentions, sham judicial review processes, and imprisonment in maximum-security jails. In June of this year, an expose on immigration detention showed signs of political interference in detention release processes and in July, the United Nations condemned Canadian immigration detention practices and called for the release of those held indefinitely.

Protesters are demanding that the Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services, Yasir Naqvi, follow the lead of the MTO and refuse to cooperate with the federal government's agenda that only result in ripping Ontario families and communities apart.

For more information contact:
Syed Hussan
No One Is Illegal Toronto
Phone: 416-453-3632

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