Friday, June 1, 2007

Community Organizations Call on Canadian Government to Pass Motion for a Moratorium on Deportations for Non-Status peoples

Media Advisory  May 31, 2007

Press Conference: Tuesday, June 5, 2007, 10:00 am

Access Alliance Multicultural Community Health Centre -
340 College St, Suite 500


- Victor Wong, Chinese Canadian National Council
- Pedro Barata, Portuguese-Canadian National Congress
- Vilma Filici, Hispanic National Congress
- Loly Ricco, Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants
- Roger Langen, Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation
- Iliam Burbano, Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 3393
- Angelica and Abraham Larios ¨C Gallegos (Mexican Family
facing deportation)
- Sima Zerehi, No One is Illegal and the Don't Ask Don' Tell

At a press conference being held at Access Alliance Multicultural
Community Health Centre on Tuesday June 5, community
workers, trade unionists, agency providers and supporters will
urge the House of Commons to pass a motion introduced by the
Standing Committee on Immigration to place an immediate
moratorium on deportations of all non-status peoples and their
families. This moratorium is intended to be in effect while a
regularization program is put in place to address the
crisis of the over 500,000 people living in Canada without status.

In response to the mass mobilizations in 2006, demanding an end
to the unjust deportations of non-status communities particularly
the Hispanic and Portuguese communities, as well as an end to
immigration raids in Toronto schools, the Standing Committee on
Immigration which includes MP's from the Conservative, Liberal,
NDP and the Bloc Quebecois parties have drafted a motion calling for
a moratorium on deportations until a national regularization program
is implemented in Canada.

On May 11, 2007 the motion was debated at the House of Commons,
and on June 6, 2007 the debate for this motion will continue resulting
in a vote.

Regularization programs for non-status communities have been part
of Canada's history. The first regularization or amnesty program was
introduced by a Conservative MP Douglas Jung almost 50 years ago.
Many such programs have followed including the Administrative
Review Program in 1986 and the Backlog Clearance Program of 1989,
two examples which collectively granted amnesty to approximately
160,000 individuals. These programs were created and implemented
under Brian Mulroney's Conservative Government. Most recently,
the Deferred Removal Orders Class (DROC) program of 1994-1998
regularized over 4,000 people. It has been almost ten years since
the last regularization program has been implemented and community
workers, trade unionists, agency providers and supporters strongly
urge the Canadian government to pass this motion in order to offer a
humanitarian resolution to the crisis of the undocumented people and
their families living in daily fear of detention and deportation.

The press conference will allow a multiplicity of community leaders,
representatives and advocates to add their voices to the parliamentary
debates on this crucial motion and to highlight the significance of a
favourable vote for all Canadians.


Media Coordinator: Sima Zerehi 416.893.4053,