The Global Migration and Health Initiative: Expanding equity, inclusion and access for migrants in Toronto
The University of Toronto School of Cities recent publication (City Research Insights, Vol II, Issue II) highlights two of GloMHI’s projects that have contributed considerable knowledge to the understanding of equity issues for migrants living in and around Toronto. The publication discusses the projects that focus on migrant caregivers and trans Latina women, present some key findings from the research network, and consider the policy implications of this important work.
Since its creation in 2015, GloMHI’s members have contributed to important research funded by a wide array of public sector agencies focused on studying global determinants of health related to migration in Canada. As the School of Cities gears up to focus on a key theme for 2022/2023 – migration, belonging and thriving - this issue aims to feature the work of an important network of researchers dedicated to increasing knowledge about the intersection of migration and health in Canada and around the world.
You can also click here to read excerpts from the interview with Andrea A. Cortinois and Denise Gastaldo on the Global Migration and Health Initiative (GloMHI).
Our blog ECHOES has published a new original contribution by Dr. Liz Such (Research Fellow, University of Sheffield and Knowledge Mobilisation Research Fellow, National Institute of Health Research, UK) on "Moving beyond Reactive Responses to Human Trafficking: The Potential of a Public Health Approach"
An article in the National Post highlights how a global vaccine shortage has contributed to the exclusion of migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers on national vaccination plans.
"With 86 per cent of the world’s refugees living in low- and middle- income countries, their inclusion and prioritization in national vaccination plans is crucial. "
The article notes how the Venezuelan refugee crisis is one of the biggest in the world and is predicted to continue to increase. "Venezuelan refugees are at great risk of contracting COVID-19 due to their large numbers and slow vaccination rates across the South America."
Our blog ECHOES has published a new original contribution by Cayla Hari and Professor Temilola Salami (Sam Houston State University) on "Considerations for Working with Foreign-Born Human Trafficking Victims."
Statement from the Migrant Rights Network:
"Yesterday we released data from Immigration Canada that has caused us grave concern. Until 2019, acceptance rates for Humanitarian and Compassionate applications in Canada averaged 64%, but in 2020 that number decreased to 42%, and in the first quarter of 2021, fell even further to 30%. Humanitarian and Compassionate rejections have doubled in Canada between 2019 and the first quarter of this year.
That means tens of thousands of undocumented migrants have been unfairly shut out.
This is part of why starting on July 18th with a massive rally in Montreal, migrants from across the country are going to Ottawa on July 25th."
Migrants from Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec spoke out. And the media is paying attention: their voices were heard on CTV, Toronto Star, Montreal Gazette, Radio-Canada, Journal Métro, La Presse, La Devoir and more.
You can watch these courageous migrants speaking out here on YouTube. You can sign this Status for All petition here.
Statement by Migrant Rights Network:
In Palestine, attacks by the Israeli military resulted in hundreds killed, including 67 children. Last week, Tk'emlúps te Secwépemc released preliminary findings of unmarked and unidentified remains of 215 children at a residential school near Kamloops, British Columbia. On Sunday, an anti-Muslim hatred attacker killed a grandmother, two parents, their daughter, and leaving their 9 year old son in hospital and orphaned. These deaths are connected by on-going laws and policies that dispossess and displace people, and the racist ideas used to justify them.
130 residential schools existed in Canada, created by the Canadian government and Catholic church. At least 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken from their families and placed here. The schools were sites of abuse and neglect. Indigenous children were punished for speaking their languages and practicing their culture. Thousands never made it home.
The Canadian government violates treaty rights and Indigenous laws to build oil and gas pipelines and continues to fight residential school survivors in court who are demanding the compensation that is owed to them. These attacks are being resisted, a powerful Indigenous movement is demanding justice. Learn more by watching this animated video on the movement.
This is the same Canada that has exported $57 million worth of weapons to Israel, including $16 million in bomb components, since 2015 and has voted against 166 UN resolutions criticizing Israel’s treatment of Palestinians since 2000. Palestinians make up the largest group of refugees in the world - 5.6 million of the 26 million refugees supported by the United Nations, many of whom live in Gaza, which was the site of Israel’s latest attacks.
While Canada was created from theft of land, it now imposes immigration rules to deny rights to us. Primarily racialized and working class migrants are excluded from protections and benefits so that our work can be devalued for the profit of the super rich.
This week also marks one year since the deaths of Bonifacio Eugenio Romero and Rogelio Muñoz Santos. Virtually nothing has been done to ensure no more migrant farm workers die preventable deaths. Already in 2021, at least 9 farm workers have died, 6 of them in federally regulated quarantine.
The call for full and permanent immigration status is a call for an end to a system of deadly racialized exclusion from rights, protections and dignity. As migrants, we must demand an end to colonial violence within Canada and throw our support behind struggles for Indigenous rights and liberation.
We are not simply asking for rights under Canadian laws based on colonialism - we must challenge the violent and unfair nature of this whole system. We must join together and demand that Canadian laws and policies do not force more people out of their homes anywhere.
That is why on June 20th - World Refugee Day and Father's Day - we will take action for full and permanent immigration status for all. Actions are already being organized in Toronto (1pm EST, Immigration Headquarters, 74 Victoria Street) and Vancouver (10am PST, CBC Plaza).
Join or organize an action on June 20th near you!
Virtual Event on Children on the Move - Barriers to Health and Access for Migrants on the Border and in the U.S. (June 16)
A virtual presentation “One Common Story”, will take place on June 16 at 2pm EST . The presentation focuses on the stories of children in San Cristobal Chiapas, Mexico. In Chiapas, 98% of indigenous children live in poverty, many without birth certificates, without knowing how to read or write. Many other children are abandoned by parents who stopped here, on their way from Guatemala or Honduras to the USA.
The obstacles migrants face when they reach the Mexico-U.S. border are not new, and the pathways to legal status in the U.S. have always been complex. From the inception of the U.S. approach to regulating immigration, health considerations have been leveraged to justify policy. However, the health of the people who must navigate the U.S. immigration system is increasingly jeopardized by those policies.
This session will highlight some of the characteristics of the U.S. immigration system that enable the unjust treatment of migrants and explore the manners in which U.S. immigration enforcement can exacerbate migrants’ health concerns at the border, in detention, and in the U.S. The panelists will also discuss the ramifications of the Center for Disease Control’s Title 42 for migrants, the conditions of border detention centers, and health abuses reported.
The first International Dialogue on Migration (IDM) session of 2021 will take place virtually between 25 and 27 May 2021 from 9:00 to 12:00 EST. Building on the 2008 and 2011 IDM meetings, this session focuses on “Accelerating integrated action on sustainable development: migration, the environment and climate change”. This comes at a time of increasing political urgency, and in view of the deep impacts of the COVID-19 health crisis linking climate and migration to current and future development issues.
For additional information on the agenda and meeting documents, please check the International Dialogue on Migration webpage here.
Our blog ECHOES has published a new original contribution by Patricia Landolt (Professor of Sociology, University of Toronto) on "The Cultural Politics of Health for All: A Pragmatic and Uncertain Path to Access in Toronto, a Sanctuary-City."
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