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Human Chain to Surround Toronto Immigration Jail Against Indefinite Detention and Prison Expansion

December 10, 2016

Former immigration detainees and supporters of immigrants jailed indefinitely without charges or trial will surround the Toronto Immigration Holding Centre (TIHC), a medium security immigration prison, today to oppose the expansion of immigration detention prisons, and call for an end to detentions.

"Three immigration detainees have died in the last year, and there have been two hunger strikes, people are so desperate for justice they are starving themselves, yet the Liberal government is building more prisons to lock up even more people without charges or trial," says Sharmeen Khan from End Immigration Detention Network. "We demand a 90 day limit on detentions pending deportations, and an end to maximum security imprisonment of immigration detainees as initial steps to ending immigration detention completely."

In August, Federal Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale allotted $138 million to expand immigration prisons in Canada, rather than create laws to end indefinite detention. An additional $38 million dollars has already been allotted [1] to a project to expand the Toronto Immigration Holding Centre , which is expected to be completed next month.

"The holiday season is a time when everyone inside the prison is even more upset and knowing that another year has passed without justice," says a former immigration detainee joining the rally. "No one should be separated from their families, specially jailed indefinitely without charges or trial. We need new laws not more prisons."

Supporters will form a human chain around the prison to collectively embrace those jailed inside who have been unjustly separated from their friends and families.

"When it comes to immigration detention, Canada has failed to live up to even the most minimal of basic human rights and has faced enormous criticism for it," says immigration lawyer Karin Baqi. "We wish there was cause for celebration this Human Rights Day, but instead Canada is in gross violation, it's time for legal restrictions on unjust

The United Nations has repeatedly [2] criticized [3] Canada for refusing to introduce legislation that would place a 90-day limit on immigration detention.



For more information contact:
Sharmeen Khan
End Immigration Detention Network
Phone: 647-881-0440

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