All posts by admin

(Feb 27) FROM BEHIND CHURCH WALLS: A picket in solidarity with the Awan family and other sanctuary struggles

When: Thursday, February 27th, 12pm-1pm
Where: outside CIC and CBSA offices, 1010 St-Antoine (metro Bonaventure)
** Free spiced hot chocolate will be served
** Featuring a creative visual action to honour some of those lives lost or left in suspension due to violent and unjust immigration laws

Posters here.        Facebook event here.

On February 27th, it will have been six months that Khurshid Begum Awan took sanctuary in a Montreal church. In August 2013, she made the courageous decision to defy a removal order which would have seen her returned to Pakistan, where she faces targeted violence, lack of access to appropriate medical care, and indefinite separation from her daughter and grandson, who live in Montreal.

The practice of sanctuary represents community resistance to violent and unjust immigration laws. Over the past decade, dozens of individuals and families have made the extremely difficult decision to take sanctuary in churches across Canada. Marked by increasingly racist and exclusionary measures, the Canadian immigration system forces people to make increasingly difficult choices. From the historic strike waged by detained migrants to denounce their conditions at the Central East Correctional Centre in Lindsay, Ontario, to the tragedies of Lucia Vega Jimenez and the Wajli family, migrants across the country are finding themselves in situations of tremendous precarity, sometimes even resorting to death rather than facing detention and deportation.

Continue reading

(Press Release) 6 months of Sanctuary: Awan Family receives visit from their Member of Parliament Thomas Mulcair inside Montreal church

MONTREAL, February 14th, 2014 – This noon hour, Khurshid Begum Awan was visited by Thomas Mulcair, the Member of Parliament representing her former residence in Côte-des-Neiges, where she lived before she was forced to take sanctuary in a Montreal church on August 21st, 2013.

mulcairvisit1By taking sanctuary, she courageously defied her deportation order which would have seen her returned to Pakistan where she faces targeted violence, lack of access to appropriate medical care, and indefinite separation from her daughter Tahira and grandson Ali.

Continue reading

(Press Release) New Year, Ongoing Injustice: Montrealers to Rally in Solidarity with the Awan Family and to Denounce the Treatment Leading to the Death of Lucia Vega Jimenez

Where: In front of Citizenship and Immigration Canada offices, 1010 Saint-Antoine West, Bonaventure Metro
When: Friday 31 January 2014, 12pm to 1pm

MONTREAL, January 31, 2013- As a new year begins, Montrealers will be gathering at the Citizenship and Immigration Office to denounce ongoing injustices in the case of Khurshid Begum Awan and to send the family’s wishes to Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander.

“For the past five months, Khurshid Begum Awan has been confined within the walls of a Montreal church. She continues to breathe injustice with every single moment spent without status and without the freedom to move”, said Farha Najah Hussain of the Awan Family Support Committee.”

Continue reading

(January 31) A New Year begins… and injustices continue! Picket in solidarity with the Awan family

(download flyers here)

Where: In front of Citizenship and Immigration Canada offices, 1010 Saint-Antoine West, Bonaventure Metro
When: Friday 31 January 2014, 12pm to 1pm

Join us in sending the Awan family’s New Year wishes to immigration minister Chris Alexander.

The Awan family wishes for 2014:

That Khurshid Begum Awan be granted status immediately,
That Mohamad Khalil Awan be allowed to come back to Canada to join his family,
That the family finally be reunited and be able to live in dignity!

Continue reading

(December 18) Press Release: Yarn-bombing on International Migrants Day to demand justice for the Awan family and freedom for all migrants

Presse Release

YARN-BOMBING ON INTERNATIONAL MIGRANTS DAY TO DEMAND JUSTICE FOR THE AWAN FAMILY AND FREEDOM FOR ALL MIGRANTSMigrantDay2013K

When: December 18th, 2013, 8AM (we will begin mounting at 7:30 AM)

Where: Citizenship and Immigration Office, corner of Peel and St-Antoine

Photos by Thien V.: http://quelquesmoments.tumblr.com/

MONTREAL, December 18, 2013- Lamp-posts surrounding the Citizenship and Immigration Canada office were covered in brightly coloured yarn this morning, as part of a yarn-bombing action held by members of the Awan Family Support Committee and the Collectif No Borders. The action took place on International Migrants Day, a day observed to commemorate the collective struggles of migrants worldwide. It also aims to highlight the struggle of the Awan family for status, justice and dignity.

Continue reading

(November 28) (Press Release) 100 Days of Sanctuary Too Many!

100 Days of Sanctuary Too Many!

Mrs. Khurshid Begum Awan and Tahira Malik demand justice

Nov.28rally

Montreal, 28 November 2013 – Today marks the one-hundredth day of sanctuary for Mrs. Khurshid Begum Awan, a Pakistani refugee who courageously decided to defy a deportation order issued to her on August 21st 2013. Since then, she has been forced to live in a church in Montreal until her status is regularized. This has not only caused inordinate daily stress for her, her daughter Tahira, and her grandson Ali, but has forced her to miss medical appointments, and endure intimidation by Canada Borders Service Agents (CBSA). If deported to Pakistan, Mrs. Awan risks facing multiple forms of violence, including murder by members of the violent anti-Shia group, Sipah-e-Sahaba.

Continue reading

(Nov 28) 100 Days Too Many! Picket outside of CIC in solidarity with the Awan family

100 Days Too Many!awanpicket
Picket Outside of the CIC
in solidarity with the Awan Family

Where: Citizenship and Immigration Canada offices
1010 Rue Saint Antoine Ouest
Metro Bonaventure

When: Thursday November 28, 2013
12:00pm –1:00pm

100 days of inaction from Immigration Minister Chris Alexander
100 days of surveillance and intimidation by Canadian Border Services Agency
100 days of living in hiding and in fear
100 days of defiance against unjust and violent government regulations

Continue reading

(Nov 26) Fall Feast in Solidarity with the Awan Family

Tuesday November 26, 2013falldinner
6:30pm-9:30pm
CEDA
2515 Delisle
(Metro Lionel-Groulx)
The Awan Family Support Committee and Radical Christian Association of McGill invite you to a community dinner and fall feast in solidarity with the Awan Family.
Join us for an evening of food, music, and performances to affirm support for the Awan family and to celebrate their struggle. This event also aims to raise funds to cover costs related to groceries, legal fees, and medical expenses.
Please note that venue is wheelchair accessible. Childcare will also be provided on-site. Bring your kids! All are welcome!

Continue reading