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(en) Canada, CALL IMMIGRATION: SUPPORT WENDY MAXWELL!

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>(Mick mickblack47-A-yahoo.com)
Date Mon, 7 Mar 2005 08:16:34 +0100 (CET)


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Friends and comrades, I'm posting this urgent appeal for solidarity on
anarchist list-servs due to the fact that Punching Out (NEFAC Toronto)
members are involved in this campaign and we feel that it requires
immediate international solidarity.
Wendy recently spoke on a panel discussion on sex-workers struggles hosted
by Punching Out and is a vocal activist with the "Don't ask, Don't Tell"
campaign that Punching Out is involved in. See:
http://www.dadttoronto.org/
Please call, fax, and email the Canadian immigration minister, sign the
on-line petition, forward this email, and stay tuned for more information.

We are also seeking to raise emergency funds for Wendy's release from
jail, as well as endorsements and statements in support of Wendy from
Community, Labour, Women's, Anti-Racist, and Immigrant Defence
organizations as well as all other social movements. See
http://ocap.ca/wendy for breaking updates.

UJOLI (solidarity),
Mick, Punching Out (Northeastern Federation of Anarcho-Communists,
Toronto)

--------------------------
Subject: (Toronto) MONDAY - CALL IMMIGRATION: SUPPORT WENDY MAXWELL!
SUPPORT WENDY MAXWELL'S BID TO STAY IN CANADA

MONDAY, MARCH 7: PHONE, FAX, EMAIL THE MINISTER OF IMMIGRATION!!!

--Please take 5 minutes on Monday to contact the Minister of Immigration
and urge him to allow Wendy Maxwell to remain in Canada-- READ ON!

On Saturday March 5th at the International Women’s Day rally at Jorgenson
Hall at Ryerson University, a woman was arrested by 51 Division officers
while selling cookies to raise money for CKLN Community Radio. Her crime:
living in Canada with out Immigration status. Wendy Maxwell, also known
as Nzinga, is now in jail at the Vanier Centre for Women in Milton. She
could be deported at any time.

Nzinga is a talented and strong Black Woman who is an active member of our
community. Many who have met her either as a colleague, friend, or through
her community work admire her tenacity and humility. These are the type of
people our community needs. Born in Costa Rica, she is a woman of
Jamaican descent who has had to contend with police repression, the
violence of organized crime, and now the racism of Citizenship and
Immigration Canada. After six productive years in Canada and continuous
community involvement, she faces imminent deportation to a dangerous and
uncertain future even though she has an application for landed status
filed with Immigration Canada that has yet to be adjudicated.

Nzinga faces serious risk if forced back to Costa Rica. She was once
picked up by the Costa Rican police, well known for racially profiling
Black people, and sexually assaulted by them. She also faces risk as a
bisexual woman from the police, whose homophobia is well documented. One
Costa Rican research group states that “lesbian women are exhaustively
searched in round-ups at clubs frequented by gays and lesbians and are
also subject to aggression, physical abuse and robbery by the police who,
in most cases, claim they were looking for drugs”. Added to this, she
faces serious risk from a dangerous Costa Rican gang which she has had
dealings with in the past. Given the homophobic and racist nature of the
police, it is to be expected that she will not be able to obtain
protection from them against this gang. Nzinga is still coping with
serious Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (documented by Psychologists at the
Toronto Rape Crisis Centre and other clinics) due to the abuse she
experienced in Costa Rica. Sending her back will re-inflame her
psychological problems and stop her healing process.

Despite this, Immigration Canada determined that she would not be at risk
if deported and ordered her to fly back to Costa Rica on December 1, 2003.
She was forced to go “underground” and filed a humanitarian and
compassionate leave application for status soon after that (in February of
2004) on the basis of risk and establishment.

Nzinga has worked tirelessly in the community as a volunteer at CKLN 88.1
FM Community Radio. She has also worked with the Latin American Coalition
to end Violence Against Women (now called MUJER), the Barbara Schlifer
Commemorative Clinic, the Ralph Thornton Community Centre as a network
administrator’s assistant, the Global African Congress, and as an outreach
worker with the Black Coalition for Aids Prevention (BlackCAP). Her work
is also being published in “A New Look at Heterosexism and Homophobia”
being put out in collaboration with the McGill University for the Canadian
Aids Society. She has been employed through out her 6 years in Canada.

JOIN THE STRUGGLE TO SUPPORT WENDY MAXWELL
YOUR HELP IS URGENTLY NEEDED!

MONDAY, MARCH 7th : CALL, FAX, OR EMAIL THE IMMIGRATION MINISTER

The Minister of Immigration, Joe Volpe, has the authority to intervene in
any Immigration case. Please contact his office on Monday and urge him
to:

* Grant WENDY MAXWELL a Temporary Resident’s Permit so that she can
remain in Canada legally until her Humanitarian and Compassionate Leave
application for permanent resident’s status is decided upon (the
application was filed in February of 2004 and has been in the system for
over a year now).

* Release Wendy Maxwell from custody immediately

If you are part of any broader organizations, please encourage them to
contact the Minister as an organization in support of Wendy Maxwell.

In Toronto: (416) 781-5583 (p) (416)781-5586 (f)
In Ottawa: (613) 992-6361 (p) (613)992-9791 (f)
Email: Minister@cic.gc.ca

SIGN A PETITION SUPPORTING WENDY:
http://users.resist.ca/~gidget/petition.shtml


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