Update on the Awan family’s struggle for justice

Dear supporters,DSC_0136

After nearly one year in sanctuary, the Awan family is no longer living behind church walls. On August 5, 2014, Khurshid Begum Awan presented herself to Citizenship and Immigration Canada in order to obtain her Pre-Removal Risk Assessment (PRRA) application, recourse that could potentially allow her to regularize her status. Arrested and detained overnight at the Laval Immigration Detention Centre, she was released the next day on a cash bond, a curfew, and certain conditions.

The family’s decision was taken under considerable duress. To begin, Mrs. Awan’s Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) coverage had expired, leaving her without any access to medication or health services at a time when her health has been steadily deteriorating. The demands of caring for her mother led her daughter, Tahira, to lose her job and left her without any source of income. Furthermore, the past months spent in sanctuary have been a source of tremendous stress and exhaustion for the entire family. In many respects, the family’s experience highlights the precariousness, isolation and fear that Canada’s racist and exclusionary immigration laws portend for migrants living without status.

In the coming weeks, Mrs Awan will be submitting a PRRA application, while also awaiting a decision on her request for permanent residency on Humanitarian and Compassionate grounds. Mrs. Awan is also benefitting from this brief reprieve, and from the temporary renewal of her IFHP coverage, to seek much-needed health services. The Awan family may no longer be living in sanctuary, but their struggle is far from over. The following months will be pivotal in their efforts to regularize Mrs. Awan’s status and remain together in Montreal.

Below are some ways to continue to support their struggle for justice and dignity:

1- Make a Donation
By cheque:
Please write your cheque out to “Solidarité sans frontiéres”, specifying “Awan Family support” in the memo line. You can send your cheque by mail, or drop it off in person, at the following address.
Solidarité sans frontières / Awan Family Support
1500 de Maisonneuve West, #204
Montréal, QC H3G 1N1
By paypal:
A paypal payment can be made through our website at. Please send us an e-mail at soutien.famille.awan@gmail.com
By cash:
To arrange a cash contribution, please contact us at soutien.famille.awan@gmail.com.
2- Stay Tuned for Public Actions
As applications are sent out and decisions come in, we may soon be calling on supporters to mobilize in solidarity with the Awan family. Here are some ways to stay tuned for upcoming events and actions.
* Join our announcement list at: soutien.famille.awan@gmail.com
* Check out our website at: http://www.soutienfamilleawan.org/
Justice for the Awan Family, Status for All!