Rally Outside Cabinet Retreat Affirms Rights of Migrants
On January 23, federal cabinet ministers gathered in Hamilton, Ontario for their winter retreat, which will last three days. While they gathered inside the Hamilton Convention Centre, a spirited rally took place of Hamiltonians and others from different cities in Ontario, expressing the demand that the federal government, once and for all, affirm the rights of migrants in Canada by granting them status and regularizing their immigration status so that they are not left vulnerable to employers, academic institutions, police or anyone else.
Those addressing the rally spoke with pride of the work they do, and have done throughout the pandemic, in building and maintaining Canadian society, whether as healthcare workers, agricultural and construction workers or those working in many other sectors of the economy. They are claiming from this society what is their due: the right to stay and make their lives in Canada and for the conditions they require to do their work, including from healthcare and social services, to pursue their education to being able to re-unite their families. Several of the speakers were workers who, having worked in Canada throughout the pandemic, have now become undocumented and are facing imminent deportation.