Welcome to the website of No One Is Illegal Vancouver!

Posted by admin on Aug 16th, 2007

The website is a fairly comprehensive site, some navigation tips:
* Top menu includes extensive factual backgrounders.
* Blogroll below, categorized in right-hand menu, includes news and NOII updates.
* Large buttons on the right link to principles, photos, and campaigns.

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Don’t Let My Daughters Become Homeless”: A mother’s plea to the Immigration Minister

Posted by admin on Feb 19th, 2021

(Surrey) – On Family Day, a permanent resident, mother and widow in Surrey is making a personal plea to Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, to reunite her with her nine and eleven year old daughters before they become homeless in Haiti.

“I am desperate and stressed. It is not safe for a 9 and 11 year old girl to live without adult supervision,” Velaine Anis explains. “I do not know what to do. When they cancelled flights from the Caribbean, I heard that Justin Trudeau said they will make exceptions for humanitarian reasons and I am asking the Minister to please intervene to make sure my daughters do not become homeless.”

“The government exposes their priorities when they go to great lengths to deport thousands of people during the pandemic, but the girls’ permanent residence applications were stalled during the same pandemic,” says Omar Chu, a member of No One Is Illegal who has supported Velaine throughout her immigration process. “We are asking the Minister to change those priorities.”

“During Black History Month, the government acknowledged ongoing systemic anti-Black racism in Canada. Racism is a part of the foundation of this country. We want the federal government to do the right thing, we want a society where Black children and families live and thrive together,” says Lama Mugabo of the Hogan Alley Society.

“Caregivers understand the pain of family separation and the importance of family unity,” says Julie Diesta of the Vancouver Committee for Domestic Workers and Caregivers Rights and the Migrant Rights Network. “That’s why the Migrant Rights Network has consistently demanded permanent resident status and family unity for all migrants and refugees here and landed status on arrival for those that arrive in the future. If this demand had been implemented Velaine’s children wouldn’t be in the situation that they are in now.”

Velaine Anis is the biological mother of the eldest daughter and has been the only mother to the younger one since she was two years old. After Velaine was attacked and threatened in Haiti in 2015, she thought that she was only coming to Canada to allow the situation to cool down. She left the children in the care of her sister. However, days after she arrived in Canada, her husband was murdered. She made a refugee claim and after a long immigration journey, was granted permanent residence on humanitarian and compassionate grounds in late 2019.

As soon as Velaine received permanent residence, she immediately applied to bring her daughters to Canada. Those applications were sent to the Canadian Embassy in Haiti, but when her lawyer issued another request for urgent processing, they responded that “because of the coronavirus pandemic, which is an international public health emergency, the immigration section of the Canadian Embassy works only via telework. This limits our ability to process paper applications such as applications for permanent residence.”

During the five years Velaine has been in Canada, her sister moved to the Dominican Republic leaving her daughters in the care of a friend. This friend has now informed Velaine that due to the economic and security situation in Haiti, she can no longer care for Velaine’s children and will also be moving to the Dominican Republic on April 10th. Velaine doesn’t know anybody else who can care for the children.


le 15 février 2021

 (Surrey) – Ce jour de la famille, une résidente permanente, mère et veuve demande au Marco Mendicino, Ministre de l’Immigration, des Réfugiés et de la Citoyenneté, de lui réunir avec ses filles de neuf et onze ans avant qu’elles deviennent sans-abris. 

 Velaine Anis explique : « Je suis désespérée et stressée. Les filles de neuf et onze ans ne peuvent pas vivre sans adulte. Je ne sais pas quoi faire. Quand ils ont annulé les vols des Caraïbes, Justin Trudeau a dit qu’ils feront des exceptions humanitaires et je demande au Ministre d’intervenir pour que mes filles ne deviennent pas sans-abris. »

 Omar Chu, membre de Personne n’est illégal déclare : « Le gouvernement expose ses priorités quand ils expulsent des milliers de personnes pendant la pandémie, mais les demandes de résidence permanente des filles ont été bloquées à cause de la même pandémie. Nous demandons au ministre de changer ses priorités. »

 Lama Mugabo du Hogan Alley Society: « Ce Mois de l’histoire des Noirs, le gouvernement a reconnu le racisme systémique envers les Noirs au Canada. Le racisme est dans la fondation de ce pays. Nous voulons que le gouvernement fédéral fasse le bon choix, nous voulons une société où les enfants noirs et les familles peuvent vivre et prospérer ensemble. »

 Julie Diesta, membre du Vancouver Committee for Domestic Workers and Caregivers Rights et du Réseau Des Droits Des Migrant(e)s dit : « Les aides familiaux reconnaissent la peine de la séparation familiale. C’est pourquoi le Réseau Des Droits Des Migrant(e)s exige le statut de résidence permanente pour tous et toutes. Les migrantes devraient pouvoir venir au Canada en tant que résidentes permanentes si elles le souhaitent et être en mesure d’amener leur famille avec elles. Si cette demande avait été appliquée, les enfants ne seraient pas dans la situation où elles se trouvent actuellement.  »

 Velaine Anis est la mère biologique de l’aînée et la seule mère pour la cadette depuis qu’elle a deux ans. Après avoir été attaquée et menacée en Haïti en 2015, Velaine pensait qu’elle était venue au Canada pour que la situation en Haïti se calme. Elle a confié ses filles à sa sœur, elle pensait que ça allait être temporaire. Mais, quelques jours après son départ, son mari a été assassiné. Elle a présenté une demande d’asile et après un parcours long et difficile, elle a reçu la résidence permanente à cause des considérations humanitaires vers la fin de 2019.

 Velaine a immédiatement fait une demande pour parrainer ses enfants. Ces demandes étaient envoyées à l’Ambassade du Canada en Haïti. Mais, lorsque son avocat a envoyé des demandes de traitement d’urgence, l’ambassade a répondu que la pandémie « limite notre capacité à traiter les demandes en papier telles que les demandes pour la résidence permanente. »

  Pendant les cinq années que Velaine a passées au Canada, sa sœur a déménagé en République dominicaine, confiant les enfants à la garde d’une amie. L’amie vient d’informer Velaine qu’à cause de la situation économique et sécuritaire en Haïti, qu’elle ne peut plus prendre soin des enfants, elle déménage en République dominicaine, le 10 avril prochain. Velaine ne sait personne qui peut prendre soin des enfants après le 10 avril.


Canada Locking Up Yemeni Doctor for more than Six Months Seeking to Deport Him to Mexico

Posted by admin on Jun 18th, 2020

June 15, 2020

(Surrey) – No One Is Illegal – Coast Salish Territories is calling on the CBSA to immediately release Dr. Mohammed Al-Humaikani from detention and halt his deportation. Dr. Al-Humaikani has been indefinitely imprisoned in Fraser Regional Correctional Centre and the Surrey Immigration Holding Centre since he arrived in Canada on November 21, 2019. Dr Al-Humaikani fled Yemen in 2016 travelling through Turkey, Ecuador, Colombia, Panama, Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico and the USA. The five-year-long war in Yemen has left 100,000 dead, with more than 20 million people in Yemen needing humanitarian assistance.

“I am looking for anywhere where I can live safely with my wife and son,” Dr Al-Humaikani says. “I’ve faced so much discrimination and violence as an Arab who can’t speak Spanish, and I could not stay in the US because of the ban on Yemenis. Then, Canada put me in jail.”

Canada Border Services Agency is seeking to remove Dr Al-Humaikani to Mexico, where COVID-19 deaths have hit a new daily high of 1,092 deaths. Dr Al-Humaikani has presented to CBSA proof from the Mexican government that he has renounced his Mexican permanent residence, but CBSA is still attempting to deport him to the country dealing with a skyrocketing pandemic, where he no longer has any immigration status.

Dr. Al-Humaikani has been unfairly detained already for six months and twenty-four days, since November 21, 2019, because Canada says they do not think he will appear for proceedings. He has been so frustrated with the conditions that he began a hunger strike.

“This is just another example of the twisted logic behind Canada’s immigration detention regime,” says Omar Chu, a member of No One Is Illegal. “Dr Al-Humaikani has been clear that he is searching for the right to safety, and Canada responds by imprisoning him. Meanwhile, they lifted the freeze on arm exports to Saudi Arabia, who are leading a coalition that continues to bomb Sana’a, his hometown.”

Contact: Omar Chu


Posted by admin on Sep 3rd, 2018

We write in solidarity with prisoners at the Central Nova provincial jail in Burnside as you enter three weeks of ongoing, peaceful and inspiring protest within the prison.

We read and were moved by your strong and clear articulation: “We recognize that the injustices we face in prison are rooted in colonialism, racism and capitalism. August is a month rich with the history of Black struggle in the Americas.”

We support your extensive list of immediate demands for humane treatment including adequate health care, rehabilitative programs, exercise equipment, clothing and shoes, access to the library, air quality, and a healthier canteen: https://www.halifaxexaminer.ca/province-house/the-prisoners-at-the-burnside-jail-are-engaged-in-a-non-violent-protest-here-is-their-statement/

We are responding to your specific call for groups on the outside to support your statements and demands. As you state, all of these demands are reasonable and promote basic wellbeing. Nova Scotia Corrections has already been criticized by the provincial Auditor General for failure to comply with minimal provincial and international human rights standards.

We express our full solidarity and respect for the ongoing Burnside action.

We understand that prisons maintain racial, economic, and social power structures, and that ‘tough on crime’ narratives and policies criminalize oppressed communities. Across Canada, the brutality of law enforcement and over-representation of racialized and poor communities is not an aberration. Prisons are intended to disappear and warehouse certain targeted communities. Indigenous women are the fastest growing population in Canadian prisons with incarceration rates that have increased by 100 percent in the past fifteen years. There are also 70 percent more Black Canadians in federal prison compared to ten years ago.

As migrant justice organizers, we daily witness and hear about the indefinite incarceration of racialized migrants and refugees. We regularly hear horrific stories of segregation, miscarriage, suicide attempts, lack of access to lawyers or legal aid, denial of visits, no translation services, and more. Since 2000, at least 17 people have died in immigration detention, either directly in the custody of the Canada Borders Service Agency or while detained in provincial jails.

As Ruth Wilson Gilmore says “anti-criminalization and the extensive and intensive forces and effects of criminalization and perpetual punishment has to be central to any kind of political, economic change that benefits working people and their communities, or benefits poor people, whether or not they’re working, and their communities.”

We offer our solidarity for your courageous stance, and all those who are deemed “criminals” or “illegal” within this unjust system. We are also sending a $200 donation as material support in this important struggle. We encourage our networks to also write letters of support, and take action by contacting Justice Minister Mark Furey at justmin@novascotia.ca

No cages, no borders!

Joint Open Letter to Vancouver Pride Society

Posted by admin on May 17th, 2017

This letter was first presented at a meeting to Vancouver Pride Society in February 2017 and is now being released publicly on May 11, 2017.

Open Letter to the Vancouver Pride Society,

We write this letter as LGBTQIA2+ organizations and individuals and anti-racist community groups with majority queer and trans membership based on unceded Indigenous Coast Salish territories.

We write to support Black Lives Matter-Vancouver in their calls for the Vancouver Pride Society to remove any and all presence of uniformed police officers (VPD and RCMP) from marching as an institution in the Vancouver Pride Parade in 2017 and onward.

» click here to continue reading

Border Rights for Refugees: A multilingual guide

Posted by admin on Apr 5th, 2017

Border Rights for Refugees

A free multilingual guide for non-U.S. citizens coming to Canada from the U.S. to make a refugee claim.

Share widely: https://noii-van.resist.ca/?p=6487

Thousands of refugees are crossing the Canada-U.S. border, many fleeing escalated sociopolitical, white supremacist, misogynist violence and I.C.E raids in the U.S.

In the first two months of this year, approximately 2000 refugee claims were filed at land ports of entry along the Canadian border. In Quebec alone there are six times more land-border refugee claims than in the same period last year. RCMP have intercepted or arrested (not yet charged) 1,134 refugees – nearly half as many asylum seekers in three months as all of the previous year.

Hundreds have been forced to cross irregularly under dangerous and life-threatening circumstances. People who have contacted us and our networks are primarily from Somalia, Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Djibouti, Ghana, Nigeria, and Mexico.

The Canadian government and corporate media’s rhetoric about ‘welcoming refugees’ is misleading. There are many discriminatory and unjust barriers, such as the Safe Third Country Agreement that the Canadian government refuses to rescind, and a difficult legal system for refugees to navigate if coming through the U.S. This guide is to better inform and support those making the difficult decision to cross yet another colonial border.

The guide is produced by No One Is Illegal and the Immigration Legal Committee of the Law Union of Ontario. Supported by the African-Canadian Legal Clinic.

PDF of the English here

With professional translations in:
Chinese (Simplified Script)
Filipino (Standardized)
Haitian Creole
Kurdish (Sorani)

Freedom to stay, move, and return!

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