IWC-CTI

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“That was a kidnapping”: CBSA cuts fence to deport Lucy Granados with only the clothes on her back

Press Release

Lucy-detention_centre_bnner

Banner on fence of Laval Immigration Detention Centre in Laval, Québec.

 

Supporters call on Minister Hussen to Bring Lucy Home

 

Montreal, 16 April — Lucy Francineth Granados arrived in Guatemala late on April 13th with only the clothes on her back after a turbulent final morning in Canada. Prevented from removing Lucy from the Laval Immigration Detention Centre by around 50 community members forming a festive blockade, at around 8am CBSA officers cut their way through a fence behind the detention centre to assure her deportation at 9:15.

 

“That was a kidnapping, what they did with me. no one saw me leave. At the airport, no one checked my passport. It was unjust.” said Lucy. Lucy was forced to leave all her luggage behind.

 

“Lucy told us she caught a brief glimpse of the sit-in before officials smuggled her out the back. Surrounded by tense CBSA agents and police crying “vite, vite,” Lucy was frog-marched through snow to a CBSA vehicle waiting on a nearby road. Accompanied by many cars, she was brought to the airport, driven directly onto the tarmac and mounted the plane, which took off 15 minutes later,” said William Van Driel of Solidarity Across Borders.

 

“Lucy was accompanied by two CBSA agents and a doctor on the long journey. The doctor was a fig leaf to mask the fact that the government did not respect the recommendations of four doctors that she not be deported.  She arrived alive but traumatized and with her arm still partially immobile and numb from a CBSA-inflicted injury during her arrest three weeks earlier.” Van Driel added.

 

“The question we have to ask is why the government went to the incredible length of cutting a fence to sneak her out in the face of steadfast public opposition? Were they so bent on getting rid of this single mother to silence a campaign that has drawn public attention to CBSA abuse? Or is it the symbol she represents as a voice for the rights of undocumented migrants, a problem the Trudeau government seems determined not to address?” said Van Driel.

 

“We are calling on Minister Goodale to investigate CBSA abuse and violence in Lucy’s case. We are also demanding that Immigration Minister Hussen accept Lucy’s Humanitarian and Compassionate application immediately, so that she can return to her home and community,” said Viviana Medina, a community organiser with the Immigrant Workers Centre.

 

Lucy’s application for permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds (H&C) was submitted in September 2017. Her case meets the criteria and if the ministers had simply agreed to examine it before deporting her, it would have been accepted. However, it is very unusual for H&Cs to be accepted once the applicant is deported. If it is accepted, she would normally be able to return to Canada.

 

Lucy, a single mother and a community organizer for the rights of other undocumented women and temporary workers, lived in Montreal for nine years. Since her arrest on March 20th, Lucy received extensive support from across the country. This included visits to MPs across the country, hundreds of phone calls and emails to Minister Hussen’s offices, letters, articles, rallies, vigils, and an 8-day sit-in, as well as a petition with over 14 000 signatures.

 

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Agency Workers Have the Right to Holiday Pay. Did you get yours?

Agency Workers Have the Right to Holiday Pay.
Did you get yours?

If you didn’t receive your holiday pay on May 21st, June 24th, or July 1st, bring your pay stubs to 4755 Van Horne, Suite 110 (near Metro Plamondon), on July 6th at 3:30pm. The Temporary Agency Worker’s Association can help you claim it.

https://www.facebook.com/events/500870933314562

Help us Keep the Immigrant Workers Centre open

The Immigrant Workers Centre has experienced one of it busiest years as more and more courageous workers, sometimes without status, fighting for respect and protection against bosses, who believe that workplace abuse is justified particularly if the worker is a recent immigrant or someone without status. Staff and volunteers at the centre accompany workers in their fight back. For individuals with grievances, it takes many hours to prepare cases, do the research, support given to workers and with determination to win, there have been setting precedents cases against all odds. And we do win. Examples include unemployment and occupational health benefits for those who have lost jobs as temporary foreign workers. In another case, a worker was given severance benefits far beyond what she would have received from the Commission des Normes de Travail. We see the daily abuses of the Temporary Foreign Workers Program and help workers navigate the complexities of it.
But this is not enough. We go beyond individual successes in two ways. First, we campaign for policy change. We are working in two areas: Temporary Placement Agency Work, and the Temporary Foreign Workers Program. We describe these campaigns in the accompanying newsletter. Second and perhaps more important, workers themselves, are the spokespeople and witnesses for these campaigns. The IWC is a political project in the sense that it supports building power and a collective voice for immigrant workers, both with and without status. This is the exciting part of the work and the most inspiring. Recently we held a meeting that brought together approximately 60 workers, domestics, and those employed through temporary employment agencies and those in the temporary foreign workers program. They shared stories of the abuse and exploitation but more important worked together to present demands to the Quebec Minister of Labour. The minister’s office met to discuss these issues. We will share more as the process unfolds.

This letter is to ask for your financial support. Despite the successes and the important achievements of the IWC during the past year, there have been many months where we had to decide whether to delay the rent or pay, often for weeks at a time. Currently, volunteers carry out most of the work at the centre with one person currently on staff, one on a short-term grant from Emploi Quebec and the other on a special grant from that office. We have made progress with trade unions and are in discussion with several of the large unions in Quebec for support. There is a growing understanding of the importance of the IWC as a component of the broader labour movement. Both temporary placement agencies and the Temporary Foreign Workers program are part of a wider attack on the living standards of all workers. Unions understand the importance of the IWC in organizing and supporting those workers. Our longer-term goal with the unions is to raise enough on a recurrent basis to pay the salary of one organizer. We continue to apply for both government and foundation grants and enter into partnerships with academic projects, but with limited success in an environment of budget compression. We need your help. If you support the goals of the centre please give generously and support our campaigns for justice for immigrant and migrant workers!

Sincerely

Eric Shragge

President

Board of Directors

Please donate through Paypal on our website  http://iwc-cti.ca/ You can give a single donation or a recurrent monthly donation.

Or you can make a check payable to the Immigrant Workers Centre and mail it to our office 4755 Van Horne #110 Montreal Quebec H3W 1H8

Photos of Mayworks 2013!! performances and skits by Immigrant workers depicting their struggles!

http://quelquesnotes.wordpress.com/2013/05/13/110513-2/

Precarious Worker Campaign Media

=>(english) http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2013/05/01/quebec-foreign-worker-agricultural.html

=>(english) http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Foreign+workers+face+changing+landscape/8323510/story.html

=>(francais) http://www.radio-canada.ca/nouvelles/societe/2013/04/05/003-travailleurs-immigrants-protection.shtml

=>(francaise) http://www.ledevoir.com/societe/actualites-en-societe/377067/le-cauchemar-de-maher


WORKSHOP ON EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE

WORKSHOP ON EMPLOYMENT INSURANCE & THE UNEMPLOYMENT OF

TEMPORARY AGENCY WORKERS

Saturday, June 1st, 2013, 4:00 pm

Provided by Mouvement Action Chômage

4755 Van Horne Street, Suite # 110

Immigrant Worker Centre (IWC)

To answer all your questions:

Do I have the right to obtain unemployment benefits even if I don’t have papers?

Am I entitled for unemployment insurance if I don’t have an actual job but am still employed by an agency?

Can I access employment insurance if I was laid off or terminated?

FOLLOWED BY A DISCUSSION ABOUT

THE FUTURE AND PERTINENT ACTIONS OF THE ASSOCIATION OF TEMPORARY

AGENCY WORKERS

IWC Meets with the Office of Minister Angès Maltais, Demanding Action (Press Conference)

When: Friday May 24th, at 6pm

Where: In front of 800 Square Victoria, Montréal, QC H3C 1E8

Who: Migrant workers will be present to speak about their experiences and explain their demands

On Friday, May 24th, a coalition of organizations who defend the rights of people struggling with precarious work and will meet with representatives from the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Solidarity (Minister Agnès Maltais). This meeting follows a public consultation on April 5th and a press conference on May 1st to pressure the government to consult with some of the most vulnerable people in our society as the Parti Québecois prepares a new law on precarious work. During this meeting, these organizations explained concretely the issues surrounding precarious work. In their words:

“My status as a temporary worker forced me into many exploitative situations. I had to face employers who were discriminatory and racist. One of the employers didn’t pay my salary at all until I filed a complaint with the Commission des Normes du Travail, while another restaurant never paid me at all. Right now I am working as a cook with the lowest wage among other cooks…The temporary status creates exploitation” Neil, from the Coalition of Temporary Workers

“I work at a company that hires 90% workers from temporary placement agencies. They are fired without cause, work without basic workplace safety requirements, are not given holiday pay and overtime, are not able to make complaints about highly dangerous workplace situations, and are still considered “temporary” workers after years of continuous employment”. Louis, from the Temporary Agency Worker Association

The Minister has heard us. We are only waiting for her to act with full consideration of those who are most affected by her legal project; namely those with precarious work and status situations.

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For more information:

Noé Arteaga (French/Spanish) noe@iwc-cti.ca

Mostafa Henaway (English) mostafa@iwc-cti.ca

 

Source:

Immigrant Worker’s Centre: (514) 342-2111  (CTI-IWC)

Temporary Agency Worker’s Association (ATTAP-TAWA)

Dignidad Migrante

Mexicans United for Regularisation

PINAY