TODAY 12pm: Demonstration in Support of Migrants and Refugees at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium

Attention News Editors – For Immediate Release

Solidarity Across Borders and the Non-Status Haitian Action Committee are organizing a demonstration in support of migrants and refugees TODAY at noon at Montreal's Olympic Stadium. The callout for the protest is included below.

For media interviews:

Refugees In, Racists Out!
Emergency Demonstration in Support of Migrants and Refugees
SUNDAY, AUGUST 6, 12pm sharp

Montreal Olympic Stadium – Go to "Porte Marathon" which is near "Porte D" and "Entrée K"
(métro Pie-IX)
Please arrive on time!
Bring your signs and banners in support of migrants and open borders.

A call by the Anti-Racist/Anti-Fascist Response Committee and Solidarity City Committee of Solidarity Across Borders and the Non-Status Haitian Action Committee, with the support of the Collectif de Résistance Antiraciste de Montréal (CRAM), the Resist Trump and the Far Right Network, and many others

We encourage organizations to endorse and share this callout, and to mobilize their communities and contacts. Get in touch if you can support this mobilization.
Contact: / 438-933-7654

Welcome Migrants and Refugees!

This demonstration will express support and solidarity with recent refugee arrivals, with the clear message: Welcome Migrants and Refugees! We encourage the massive participation of all who support migrant justice. A part of Montreal's Olympic Stadium complex is now being used as a temporary shelter for recent refugee arrivals, particularly Haitian migrants. More than ever, it's important to share our collective message of welcome and support.

We also demonstrate to reject the racist discourse that contrasts migrants with the homeless and poor already living in Quebec. We call for a linking of the struggles of all oppressed, poor and working class people against the rich and privileged. Instead of blaming migrants for exercising valid choices, we focus on opposing and resisting systems of oppression, specifically colonial, corporate, capitalism.

We campaign to build a Solidarity City, the creation of a community that rejects a system that engenders poverty and anguish, not solely for immigrants and refugees, but also for other Montrealers confronting these same realities. We support open borders and the free movement of people seeking justice and dignity, meaning freedom to move, freedom to return, and the freedom to stay.

Our Demands

OPEN THE BORDERS! Allow access to all migrants fleeing poverty, travel bans, raids and other attacks on their integrity as human beings. All human beings have the right to move, the right to remain, and the right to resist forced displacement.

CANCEL THE SAFE THIRD COUNTRY AGREEMENT! The USA is not a safe third country, and maintaining this agreement means that refugees leaving the USA need to enter Canada irregularly, which results in serious injuries, and will lead to more deaths.

REGULARIZE ALL UNDOCUMENTED PEOPLE IN CANADA! Canada too has a significant undocumented population, with at least 500,000 people living without regular status. Canada must implement a comprehensive, inclusive and ongoing regularization program.

Why are people crossing irregularly into Canada?

Refugees have crossed irregularly at Roxham Road, near Hemmingford and other border crossings across Quebec and Canada in larger numbers ever since the shameful Safe Third Country Agreement between Canada and the USA was implemented in 2004. This agreement prevents migrants from making refugee claims if they come to Canada from the USA at a regular border crossings. However, refugees can make claims if they make an "irregular" crossing at any other point at the border, such as at Roxham Road, which is a relatively convenient and safe place to cross.

There has been a marked increase in irregular crossings into Canada by asylum seekers currently in the USA due to the rhetoric and policies of the Trump administration, which includes attempted travel bans and attacks on the integrity of entire groups, such as Muslims, Arabs and Mexicans. More recently, with the Trump administration indicating that the temporary status to close to 50,000 Haitian migrants might be removed, many Haitians have been migrating to Canada via irregular crossings.

This is in a broader context, in which states like Canada and the United States are responsible for economic and social devastation in countries throughout the Middle East, Latin America, Caribbean, Africa, and Asia, and yet seek to limit who from those countries can live here.

The Safe Third Country agreement forces refugees to make often dangerous border crossings. In May, a refugee claimant from Ghana, Mavis Otuteye, 57, was found dead due to exposure south of the Manitoba border, where she had travelled to try to reunite with her daughter. During the winter months, other refugee claimants lost limbs due to frostbite, or risked death due to hypothermia.

Racist anti-immigrant groups like Soldiers of Odin, Storm Alliance and La Meute demonize and blame refugees. In contrast, we support and commend refugees who cross into Canada, and we express our welcome and solidarity.

Anti-Colonial Statement

Solidarity Across Borders acknowledges that we are on the traditional territory of the Kanien’kehá:ka. The Kanien’kehá:ka are the keepers of the Eastern Door of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. The island called “Montreal” is known as Tiotia:ke in the language of the Kanien’kehá:ka, and it has historically been a meeting place for other Indigenous nations. We actively support Indigenous sovereignty and self-determination, and undertake to deepen our collective understanding of Indigenous struggles.

At its foundation, Canada is based on the theft of Indigenous lands, and the ongoing genocide and displacement of Indigenous peoples. Its borders were established by colonial wars, to benefit colonizers. This recognition lies at the heart of our rejection of the Canadian state’s borders and the system of multi-tiered status, deportation and detention created by its immigration laws. We reject the legitimacy of the Canadian state as the embodiment of those structures. For this reason, we refuse to collaborate with the state, including police or border agents.

We encourage organizations to endorse and share this callout, and to mobilize their communities and contacts. Get in touch if you can support this mobilization.
Contact: / 438-933-7654

Solidarité sans frontières:
Solidarity Across Borders:
Solidaridad sin fronteras:

twitter: @SolidariteMTL
tél.: 438-933-7654