Category Archives: Refugees

Domestic violence acceptable reason to keep Mexican woman in Canada

Mexican woman in Montreal facing deportation to remain in Canada

CBCCBC – Sun, 24 Aug, 2014

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Citizenship and Immigration Canada has stayed Sheila Sedinger Ayala’s removal order.

“It feels amazing,” Sedinger Ayala told CBC news. “Now I can concentrate on celebrating my daughter’s birthday which is this Saturday, the day I was going to be deported.”

Sedinger Ayala, 27, was initially ordered to be deported back to Mexico after her refugee claim sponsor  — her husband — was convicted of a criminal offence.

Her two Canadian-born children would  have stayed behind in Canada if the deportation went ahead.

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The decision comes one day after an immigrant rights group hosted a news conference for Sedinger Ayala on Sunday.

With her fiancé by her side, Sedinger Ayala sobbed while she explained what had happened to her and why she should be granted temporary residency to allow her to stay in Canada while she sorts out her affairs.

Sedinger Ayala said she moved to Montreal from Mexico City in 2005, fleeing from a violent ex-boyfriend.

She had one child within a year of arriving in Canada — a product of gang rape while in Mexico, said Sedinger Ayala’s lawyer Angela Potvin.

She later met and married a man in Montreal with whom she had another child. She said he sponsored her bid for permanent residency and in 2008, the federal and provincial governments accepted her sponsorship application.

However, Potvin said the sponsor was found guilty of physical assault during the course of Sedinger Ayala’s sponsorship application, which in turn made him ineligible to sponsor her. She said the conviction cancelled her permanent residency bid.

Canada must rethink immigration and refugee policies

Immigrants, refugees and the poor: Rethinking compassion

July 26, 2014. 8:20 am • Section: The Search

Many Canadians make the case for compassion when they maintain the country should retain one of the world’s most generous rates for welcoming immigrants and refugees.

Canadians’ hearts go out when they hear about people struggling in countries like Guatemala, the Philippines, India and Lebanon. We tend to believe Canada has a duty to offer a better life.

Many Canadians want to be especially kind when they read about conflict-ravaged countries like Syria, Iraq, Burma, Sudan and Libya. Surely richer countries can embrace more of these suffering people?

It’s an understandable feeling. Compassion is key to virtually every spiritual world view and most secular philosophies. And there is no doubt many people are facing unimaginable hardship — particularly the roughly one billion at the bottom of the global economy. Continue reading

Hungarian Roma human traffickers deported from Canada

Josh Elliott, CTVNews.ca
Published Tuesday, July 22, 2014 10:48AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, July 22, 2014 2:56PM EDT

The federal government has announced that 20 members of a large human trafficking ring based out of Hamilton, Ont. have been deported from Canada.

The 20 deported individuals were members of the Domotor-Kolompar ring and helped run the largest proven human trafficking ring in Canada, according to the statement put out by the border agency. As of Tuesday, at least 22 members of this ring have been convicted on human trafficking charges, the BSA has confirmed. All but two were deported.

The Domotor-Kolompar family brought Hungarians from their hometown to Canada with the promise of work and a better life in the Hamilton area, Canadian officials said. But the Hungarians who came over were subjected to brutal living conditions without adequate food and forced to work construction jobs for free. The human traffickers used intimidation and threats of violence to keep their victims in line, officials said.

“This flagrant abuse of persons in our immigration system demanded a strong response,” Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney said in a news conference Tuesday. Continue reading

Andy Radia is asking Canadians if we should accept more refugees

Should Canada accept more refugees?

By  | Canada Politics – Fri, 20 Jun, 2014

The world is in the midst of a refugee crisis — the likes of which we haven’t seen since the second World War.

That’s the message in a new report from the United Nations that asks developed countries like Canada to welcome more of the world’s displaced families.

The report, released in conjunction with International Refugee Day, claims that, thanks to crises in parts of the Middle East and Africa, 51.2 million people were forcibly displaced at the end of 2013, fully 6 million more than the 45.2 million reported in 2012.

“The international community has to overcome its differences and find solutions to the conflicts of today in South Sudan, Syria, Central African Republic and elsewhere,” UN High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres said in a statement.

“Non-traditional donors need to step up alongside traditional donors. As many people are forcibly displaced today as the entire populations of medium-to-large countries such as Colombia or Spain, South Africa or South Korea.” Continue reading

Refugee Jose Figueroa has chances to remain in Canada

Increasingly, people are replacing coffee, cotton, and sugar as El Salvador’s most important export. Remittances are now a critical source of national income, making up over half of all export earnings and more than 17 percent of GDP.

BY DOUGLAS QUAN, POSTMEDIA NEWS JULY 14, 2014

A senior immigration officer’s decision to deny permanent residency to a failed asylum seeker because of his links to a resistance movement in El Salvador did not take into account “exceptionally strong” humanitarian and compassionate reasons to let him stay, a federal judge has ruled in a case that activists say highlights how Canada’s laws can too easily peg someone as a security threat

Jose Figueroa, who came to Canada as a refugee in 1997, was once a member of Frente Farabundo Marti para la Liberacion Nacional (FMLN) that opposed El Salvador’s former military regime. He helped recruit for the FMLN and organized meetings but was not involved in the armed struggle.

In a decision last year, Karine Roy-Tremblay, director of case determination for Citizenship and Immigration Canada, rejected Figueroa’s application to be allowed to stay in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds after he had been deemed inadmissible to the country on security grounds.

While acknowledging that he had not taken part in any violent campaigns with the FMLN, Roy-Tremblay said Figueroa was “not just a sympathizer to the causes.” She deemed him to have been a member of an organization that engaged in terrorism, and, therefore, a security risk.

But in a ruling posted online Monday, Richard Mosley, a federal judge, said the immigration officer’s decision was unreasonable “as it failed to take into account the nature of the conflict and Mr. Figueroa’s personal role as a non-combatant political advocate” and ordered that a different immigration officer review the application. Continue reading

Syrian gay refugees ready to come to Canada

Syrian refugee applications quietly sped up by Ottawa

Government promised to bring in 1,300 Syrian refugees by the end of 2014

By Laura Lynch, CBC News Posted: Jun 27, 2014 1:37 PM ET Last Updated: Jun 27, 2014 1:37 PM ET

Canadian immigration officials appear to have quietly sped up Syrian refugee applications following months of criticism.

Almost a year ago, the government promised to bring 1,300 Syrians to Canada by the end of 2014. Refugee advocates have accused Ottawa of failing to live up to that promise, claiming that they know of no privately sponsored refugees who have arrived in Canada as part of the program announced last year. Continue reading

Former refugee returns to South Sudan as aid worker

The Kuol family (from left – daughter Nyel, mother Abeny, and daughters Yom and Naomi), fled the violence in Sudan, eventually finding their way to Canada in 1999. Now Abeny is returning to South Sudan as an aid worker. (CBC)

Former refugee returns to South Sudan as aid worker

Abeny Kuol is leaving the safety of Canada to offer help in South Sudan

CBC News Posted: Feb 02, 2014 6:00 AM ET Last Updated: Feb 02, 2014 6:00 AM ET

Abeny Kuol knows about danger.

As a very young mother in Sudan in 1984, she was desperate to flee the fighting around her. She carried three small daughters – in her arms and on her back – first across Sudan, then later through Ethiopia to Kenya. It was a journey that covered thousands of kilometres and took many months. Continue reading

MONTREAL, QC: Illegal Ivonne Hernandez fights deportation to Mexico

Ivonne Hernandez, 41, arrived in Montreal in 2009 and filed to remain as a refugee based on her claim that she was abused by a police officer in her hometown of Mexico City. Read more: http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/woman-fights-order-to-leave-canada-without-her-baby-1.1666266#ixzz2s7uug6LO

Woman fights order to leave Canada without her baby
Read more: http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/woman-fights-order-to-leave-canada-without-her-baby-1.1666266#ixzz2s7ttDCnM

CTV Montreal
Published Saturday, February 1, 2014 5:32PM EST
Last Updated Saturday, February 1, 2014 6:34PM EST

MONTREAL – Local human rights advocates are crying foul after a Mexican woman denied refugee status was ordered to leave the country without the right to take her Canadian-born baby.

Ivonne Hernandez, 41, arrived in Montreal in 2009 and filed to remain as a refugee based on her claim that she was abused by a police officer in her hometown of Mexico City.

She was given partial custody of her child after a split with her husband, against whom she made a claim of domestic abuse after their split.

Hernandez’s refugee claim was refused and she now faces deportation on February 7. She cannot bring her baby at that time because she remains embroiled in an unresolved custody dispute with the baby’s father.

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Kitchener: Refugee clinic funded by the Ontario Health Insurance Program and the federal Interim Federal Health program opens

Frances Barrick, Record staff
Tue Apr 02 2013 16:19:00
Health clinic for refugees to open Thursday in Kitchener

KITCHENER – A health clinic dedicated to the ongoing care of refugees will open Thursday in Kitchener.

It is the first such clinic in Waterloo Region.

“I think it is a service that needs to exist….I think here is a huge need,” said Dr. Michael Stephenson, 34, who is the director and sole physician of this new clinic called Sanctuary Refugee Health Centre.

The clinic will operate on Thursdays at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church at 825 King St. W. until Stephenson said he finds a more permanent location. Continue reading