SInce at least late February migrant justice advocates and health experts have been asking the province to implement specific measures ensure that migrants, including people without migration status, refugee claimants, international students and migrant workers, all have full access to the COVID-19 vaccine. Getting the province to pay attention continues to be an uphill battle.
Providing access for migrant workers, refugee claimants, and international students within their first year of study, as well as those whose status may have lapsed, is key to ensuring an authentically universal and encompassing vaccine rollout and therefore, to safeguarding the public from extended and future Coronavirus outbreaks. And yet, there remain a number of significant barriers to meaningful universal access.
Status for all means permanent residency for all temporary migrant workers and their families who live in Canada with precarious legal status. Temporary migrant workers include international students, refugee claimants, temporary foreign workers in low-wage occupations and migrants classified as high-skilled in the International Mobility Program. It also includes non-status migrants.
An open letter to Minister Zach Churchill of Health and Wellness asks that the province remove barriers that may stop migrant workers with temporary status, refugee claimants, and others with precarious legal status from accessing a COVID-19 vaccine. We speak with two of the letter’s authors. They’re not asking for much, but small changes would make a huge difference, they say.
A small ACORN Nova Scotia rally and press conference in downtown Halifax served to remind the three Liberal MLAs running to become the new premier of Nova Scotia that as far as low income Nova Scotians are concerned the current premier left the province in a terrible mess.
The migrant justice group No one is illegal – Halifax/K’jipuktuk has published responses by Halifax council candidates to a survey on migrant rights. In total, 27 of 82 council candidates responded from 13 of the 16 districts in the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM). None of the mayoral candidates responded.
Media advisory: On October 7th, the migrant justice group No one is illegal – Halifax/K’jipuktuk (NOII-Hfx) sent an questionnaire to candidates in the upcoming municipal elections on the topic of immigration. Thus far, 15 candidates have responded to the questionnaire.
Today, actions are taking place across the country to call for full and permanent immigration status for all. In the early hours of the morning, migrant justice group No One is Illegal – Halifax/K’jipuktuk (NOII-Hfx) attached a banner to the Halifax Regional Municipality’s welcome sign on Highway 102, which reads “Status for All: No one is illegal.”
Media release: The Immigrant Migrant Women’s Association of Halifax (IMWAH) acknowledges that COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light a range of existing inequalities on Turtle Island (Canada). IMWAH shares the deep concerns being expressed across the country against systemic racism and discrimination against immigrants and migrants and racialized communities.
On July 22, 2020, the Federal Court of Canada ruled the so-called Canada-US Safe Third Country Agreement (STCA) to be unconstitutional and in violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom. Civil society groups across Canada are hailing the ruling as an important victory, while highlighting that more work needs to be done to ensure that Canada respects refugee rights.