Today at noon. Shut Down of the US Consulate in Montreal

Press Release

Shut Down of the US Consulate in Montreal

Monday, January 30th 2017 at 12pm
1155 Rue St-Alexandre, Montréal

Montreal, 30 January 2017 — We live in horrific times. The United States, the most powerful country in the world, has embarked on a path of naked racism, celebrating cruelty and contempt for the world’s poor and oppressed.

With his Muslim ban, his renewed aggression against the sovereign Indigenous nations resisting ecocide at Standing Rock, the global abortion gag order signed on his first day in office which condemns women and others to death throughout the Global South, and his proposed Great Wall of Hate, Donald Trump has made himself the champion of everything that is wrong in this world.

We will gather outside the U.S. consulate to make it clear that, around the world, we're watching and we don't intend to accept these atrocities.

Justin Trudeau is using the Trump horror-show to make a lot of nice sounding statements. Around the world, Canada is positioning itself as the “good guy” yet again. But being “better than Trump” is a low goal, and all the noise about Canadian generosity is really just that: empty noise.

At the same time, here in Quebec we have long seen the rise of racism and Islamophobia. We can highlight the role of politicians such as Pauline Marois, Bernard Drainville, and Pierre Péladeau, and journalists like Richard Martineau, Éric Duhaime and Mathieu Bock-Côté, who all fed hatred against Muslims.

As people who live within Canada’s borders, we are here to denounce Trudeau’s sugar-coated lies and the racism of the political establishments of Quebec and Canada, just as we are here to denounce the racism of our communities, the rise of the extreme right, and Trump’s shameless white supremacism.

In response to the ban and the wall, we recall:

– Under the Safe Third Country agreement, asylum seekers travelling through or within the USA are denied claims on the Canadian border. At one point, estimates were that over 40% of refugees trying to come to Canada were unable to make a claim as a result of the Safe Third Country Agreement.

– On the same day as Trump's executive order, Trudeau issued a notice ending the policy to sponsor Syrian and Iraqi refugees by Groups of Five and Community Sponsors, stating that the “quota” was full —a more "polite Canadian" way of effecting a similar racist exclusionary agenda.

– The Designated Countries of Origin (DCO) list means that those seeking refuge from the US and 40+ other countries are deemed to be “safe” – making it even more difficult to seek asylum in Canada from those countries, regardless of one’s individual circumstances.

– Canadian immigration policies are themselves racist, sexist, ableist, and anti-poor. Hundreds of people languish in Canada’s immigration detention centers. Every day dozens of people are deported. People with disabilities or illnesses, without money, or with criminal records are all routinely excluded.

We demand:

– An immediate opening of the Canadian-USA border to everyone seeking to flee the catastrophe unfolding;

– An immediate cancellation of the Safe 3rd Country Agreement with the USA and the Designated Countries of Origin list;

– The implementation of an ongoing, comprehensive and inclusive regularization program for the more than 500,000 undocumented people already living in Canada;

– Establishing Montreal as a Solidarity/Sanctuary City, open to all migrants and refugees, with access to services including health care, housing and education.

War, super-exploitation, climate chaos, and genocide are forcing millions to leave their homes, to flee for their lives. Countries like Canada and the United States are responsible for this global misery. This is where the drones are sent from. This is where the mining companies live and bring their stolen profits back to. This is where the bombs get made. This is where the warlords get their orders from.

That’s why we’re going to be organizing to shut them down wherever we can, including here in Canada. We will support those fleeing and those who stay. We will do what we can against the nightmares of racism, xenophobia, and jingoism.

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Source: Ad Hoc Organizing Committee
Contact: Interviews available on site
Background information about immigration issues: www.solidarityacrossborders.org